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Quartermaster Corps 

Supply, and Services 


The Technical Services 


Volume II 

Erna Risch 

Chester L. Kieffer 




Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 53-60879 

First Printed L955— CMH Pub 10-13-1 

For sale by the Superintendent of Document*, U.S. Government Printing Office 
Washington, D.C, 20402 

Kent Roberts Greenfield, General Editor* 

James P. Baxter 
President, Williams College 

John D. Hicks 
University of California 

William T Hutchinson 
University of Chicago 
S. L. A. Marshall 

Detroit News 
Charles S. Sydnor 
Duke University 

Advisory Committee 

Brig. Gen. Verdi B. Barnes 
Army War College 
Brig. Gen. LeonardJ. Greeley 
Industrial College of the Armed Forces 
Brig. Gen. Elwyn D. Post 

Army Field Forces 
Col. Thomas D. Stamps 
United States Military Academy 
Col. C. E. Beauchamp 
Command and General Staff College 

Charles H. Taylor 
Harvard University 

Office of the 
Maj. Gen. 

Chief Historian 

Chief, War Histories Division 

Chief, Editorial and Publication Division 

Chief, Editorial Branch 

Chief, Cartographic Branch 

Chief, Photographic Branch 

Kent Roberts Greenfield 
Col. George G. O'Connor 
Lt. Col. Thomas E. Bennett 
Joseph R Friedman 
Wsevolod Aglairnoff 
Maj, Arthur T. Lawry 

'General Editor for Technical Service volumes, Lt, Col. Leo J. Meyer, Deputy Chief 

**Maj. Gen, Orlando Ward was succeeded by General Smith on I February 1953. 

. . . to Those Who Served 


This volume is the second in a series which records the experiences of the 
Quartermaster Corps in World War II. Instead of the single theme of supply, 
emphasized in Volume I, a variety of activities are discussed, some of which — 
conservation, reclamation, and salvage operations, and industrial demobiliza- 
tion — are related to supply. Others such as laundry operations, training of dogs, 
and care of the dead, are wholly unrelated to the Quartermaster supply func- 
tion but are nevertheless important to the Army. The volume stresses the 
multiplicity of the Corps' duties and, in the complexities of modern warfare, the 
Army's need for trained Quartermaster specialists and units to support combat 
troops. The narrative sets forth the policies and problems involved in procuring 
and training Quartermaster personnel and the manner in which the Quarter- 
master Corps operated in the zone of interior. 

The authors of this volume are both members of the Historical Section of 
the Office of The Quartermaster General. Erna Risch, who joined the section 
in 1 943, has written a number of monographs published by the Quartermaster 
Corps, as well as Volume I of this series. She holds the Doctor of Philosophy 
degree from the University of Chicago. Chester L. Kieffer, coauthor, who is 
a graduate of the University of Illinois and a former journalist, worked on 
the historical program of the War Production Board before joining the staff of 
the Historical Section. 

Washington, D. C. 
23 January 1953 

Maj. Gen. , U.S.A. 
Chief of Military History 



This volume continues and rounds out the narrative of Quartermaster 
operations in the zone of interior durin g World War II that was begun in 
| Organization, Supply, and Services, Volume I| The variety of Quartermaster activi- 
ties made desirable a functional treatment discussing first supply operations, 
then personnel and training duties, and finally the special services performed 
by the Corps for the Army. Each function was dealt with chronologically insofar 
as possible. Volume I, after discussing administrative activities, related the story 
of supply operations, the major function of the Quartermaster Corps. The 
account of supply operations, because of its length, was arbitrarily concluded 
in Volume I with the discussion of stock control operations. 

The first four chapters in this volume complete the supply story, describing 
such operations as salvage, reclamation, and conservation; analyzing industrial 
demobilization, which might appropriately be called "procurement in reverse"; 
and summarizing Quartermaster supply during World War II. The next five 
chapters present a discussion of the policies and problems involved in the 
procurement and training of enlisted men and officers as specialists for the 
widely varying duties of the Corps, as well as the origin and development of 
Quartermaster units to carry out these activities in the field. The last three 
chapters of the book are devoted to the special services provided by the Corps — 
the procurement of animals, particularly mules and dogs, the operation of 
laundry and dry cleaning establishments, and the care of the dead. 

As in Volume I, primary emphasis is placed upon developments during the 
period when the United States was actually involved in the war — from 
December 1941 through August 1945. However, a history of Quartermaster 
activities in World War II could not begin with the attack upon Pearl Harbor 
or even with the declaration of the limited national emergency in 1939, for 
many of the Corps' policies had their roots in an earlier period. Those pertain- 
ing to the care of the dead, for example, dated back to the Civil War, and it was 
necessary to explain their origins and to discuss the trend of developments 
during the intervening years. 

Several aids to the reader have been added at the end of the volume. These 
include a list of the numerous abbreviations appearing in the text, and a 
bibliographical note to direct the reader to the published works available as 
well as to the unpublished materials. 

The manuscript for this volume was circulated before final editing and was 
greatly benefited by the frank criticism accorded it by Lt. Gen. Edmund B. 


Gregory (Ret.), The Quartermaster General during the war years, and by 
various administrators and technical experts in the OQMG. They were most 
generous in reading relevant portions of the text and in commenting by letter 
or in personal interview. Their assistance enabled the authors to correct 
inadvertent errors of fact and omission and to make such revisions as were 
warranted by re-examination of the record.. 

Throughout the preparation of this volume the authors relied heavily upon 
the scholarly advice and assistance offered by the Chief of the Historical Sec- 
tion, Dr. Thomas M. Pitkin. Under his general direction work has been in 
progress since 1947, not only on this volume and its companion, which cover 
Quartermaster activities in the zone of interior, but also on two other volumes 
on Quartermaster operations overseas. Throughout their years of association 
with the program, the authors have been indebted to their colleagues for their 
unfailing co-operation and help in problems relevant to their specialized fields. 
The authors also appreciate the work of the innumerable assistants who made 
available the records in the OQMG central files as well as those in storage at 
the Departmental Records Branch, Adjutant General's Office. Final editing 
was carried out by Helen McShane Bailey and copy editing by Loretto Carroll 
Stevens. Margaret E. Tackley, photographic editor, selected the pictures, and 
Anne Blair Mewha typed the copy for the printer. 

Washington, D. C. 
1 February 1954 




Part One: Supply* 

Chapter Pagt 


Administrative Organization 5 

Relations With the Services of Supply 6 

Relations With Civilian Agencies 9 

Relations With the Field 11 

Clarification of Procedures 15 

Transfer of Responsibility to the Army Service Forces 20 

Conservation Programs and Command Responsibilities 23 

Quartermaster Salvage Program 26 


Money Allowances Versus Issues in Kind 39 

Utilization of Obsolete and Class B Clothing 40 

Repair Shop System 43 

Return of Unserviceable Materiel to Supply Channels 52 

Classification and Serviceability Standards 56 

Improvement of Repair Shop Production 60 

Value of the Repair Program 65 

Conservation of Food 65 


Planning for Demobilization 72 

Downward Revision of the Production Program 81 

Development of Contract Termination Policy 88 

Advance Planning for Mass Terminations 96 

Disposal of Termination Inventory 1 04 

Disposal of Surplus Property 112 



Part Two: Personnel and Training 



Administrative Organization 142 

Qualifications of Enlisted Men in the QMC 143 

The Army Classification System and the QMC 145 

Classification by Occupational Skill 148 

Classification by Physical Capacity 156 

Classification by Intellectual Capacity , 163 

The Number and Quality of Negro Troops in the QMC 168 

Summary 173 

The first four chapters are a continuation of the supply story begun in Volume I. 


Chapter Page 


Procurement Problems in the Emergency Period 1 77 

The Critical Officer Shortage of 1942 1 84 

The Role of the Officer Candidate School 1 86 

The Commissioning of Civilians 1 92 

Classification and Assignment 197 

Operation of the Officer Pool 1 99 

Officers for Negro Troops 202 

Summary 207 


The Development of Administrative Controls 21 3 

Quartermaster Replacement Training Centers 217 

Evaluation of the Replacement Training Program 246 


The Officer Candidate School 249 

The Quartermaster School 257 

Reset ve Officers' Training Corps 264 

Motor Transport Schools 265 

Civilian Trade and Factory Schools 267 

Schools in Civilian Educational Institutions 268 

Schools for Bakers and Cooks 269 

Subsistence School 272 

Officer Training at Depots 272 

Summary 276 


UNITS 278 

Origin and Development of Quartermaster Units 279 

The Corps' Limited Responsibility for Unit Training 287 

Principal Training Problems 293 

The Development of the Training Program 296 

Summary 305 

Part Three: Special Services 


Organization for Handling Remount Activities 313 

Horses and Mules 315 

Dogs for War Purposes 321 


Administrative Organization 341 

Expansion of Fixed Laundries 348 

Use of Mobile Laundries 354 

Operation of Quartermaster Laundries 355 


Chapter Page 


Growth of Functions 361 

Administrative Organization 363 

National Cemeteries 369 

Headstones and Markers 373 

Disposition of Remains 377 

Graves Registration Service 384 

Planning for the Final Disposition of Remains 392 

Statistics on the Return of the Dead Program 402 



INDEX 415 



1 . Summary of Quartermaster Contract Terminations 90 

2. Estimated Value of ASF Procurement Deliveries: January 1942-December 

1945 121 

3. Value of QMC Procurement Deliveries by Major-Item Group: 1942- 

1945 121 

4. Deliveries of Selected Clothing, Equipment, and Supply Items 124 

5. Deliveries of a Few Selected Subsistence Items 127 

6. Purchases Directed by Office, Quartermaster General of Petroleum 

Products by Major Commodities: 1 June 1943-31 August 1945. . . . 128 

7. Value of Quartermaster Lend-Lease Shipments 129 

8. Distribution of Quartermaster Lend-Lease Shipments 130 

9. Quartermaster Civilian Supply Shipments to All Liberated Areas: 1 July 

1 943 Through 31 August 1 945 131 

10. Net Usable Storage Space Operated by the Quartermaster Corps in the 

Continental United States 1 32 

11. Tonnage Received and Shipped by Depots: September 1942-August 

1945 133 

12. Quartermaster Personnel and Work Load Per Employee in Storage 

Operations : September 1 942-June 1 945 135 

13. Growth of the QMC and the Army: Actual Strength 140 

14. Separations of Enlisted Men From the QMC 159 

15. Accessions of QMC Officers During World War II 177 

16. Separations of Quartermaster Commissioned Officers 202 

17. Types of Quartermaster Units in World War II 279 

18. Units Trained by the Office of The Quartermaster General 290 

19. QMC Fixed Laundry and Dry Cleaning Plant Activities: Fiscal Years 

1940-1945 353 



JYo. Page 

1. Stop-Work Stages for Clearing Machinery Under JTR 241.3, Worsted and 

Woolen Manufacturing Industry 84 

2. Stop- Work Stages for Clearing Machinery Under JTR 241.3, on the 

Combed and Carded Systems of the Cotton Textile Manufacturing 

Industry 86 

3. Growth of the Quartermaster Corps : 1 939-1 945 141 


Repairing Army Shoes in 1918 4 

Salvaging Scrap Material 10 

Salvage Tin Dump , 27 

Repairing Mess Kits 44 

Rebuilding Shoes 48 

Trainees Repairing Shoes 210 

Rifle Practice 211 

Clothing and Textile Repairmen in Training 221 

Mobile Laundry Unit in Operation 238 

Students Learning to Repair Engines 240 

Instruction in Meat Cutting 242 

Trainees Repairing Clothing 243 

Dummy Boxcar 245 

Miniature Models for Training 252, 253 

Model Warehouse Demonstration 263 

Training Automotive Mechanics . 266 

Class in Pastry Baking 270 

Pack Animals in Italy 320 

Pack Animals in Burma 321 

Dog Teams in Alaska 325 

Reception Center for War Dogs 328 

Kennels at Front Royal 329 

War Dog on Biak Island 336 

Patrol at Aitape 337 

Pressing Clothing 352 

Mobile Semitrailer Laundry Units 354, 355 

Makeshift Washing Machine 356 

Prisoners of War at Work 358 

U.S. Army Transport Honda Knot 401 

Temporary U.S. Military Cemetery 403 

All illustrations in this volume are from U. S. Department of Defense files. 




Salvage Policies 

Salvage activities constituted an im- 
portant factor in the effort to maintain 
sustained combat operations during World 
War II. Since these activities involved the 
repair and return to supply channels of 
discarded, damaged, or partially destroyed 
military equipment and of captured or 
abandoned enemy property, they were an 
essential part of the supply function of the 
Quartermaster Corps (QMC). Salvage 
also included the disposal by sale of scrap 
and waste materials for further industrial 
use. In the Army the term "salvage" 
became associated with the disposal of 
waste by sale because the latter was the 
principal duty of those concerned with 
salvage during the years following World 
War I. This narrow meaning was per- 
petuated by its use in Army Regulations. 
When World War II began, however, the 
old concept gave way to a broader one 
and salvage came to mean "saving for 
further use everything which comes into 
our hands, insofar as that is possible." 1 
This goal was achieved for the most part 
by the process of reclamation. Only after 
no further usefulness for an item could be 
found in the Army was it disposed of by 
sale, for use by the civilian population or 
as waste for reconversion to raw material 
for industry. To Quartermaster personnel 
directing salvage operations during World 
War II, the line of demarcation between 
conservation and salvage was a very in- 

and Procedures 

definite one, and the two procedures 
merged inseparably into each other. 

In modern war, which has been de- 
scribed as "a conflict of industry, resources, 
and transportation as much, if not more , 
than it is of arms," conservation of military 
materials and supplies is vital to the 
achievement of victory. 2 World War II 
differed from other wars in which the 
United States had been involved in that 
the country lost its principal sources of 
supply for many critical items. Its supply 
lines were extended around the globe, and 
transportation became extremely critical. 
Every pound of material recovered and 
reused in theaters of operations made that 
much more shipping space available for 
other needed supplies. Systematic salvag- 
ing in the zone of interior was equally im- 
portant since it permitted direct savings of 
critical materials for industrial use and 
helped alleviate shortages of goods in the 
civilian economy by making available 
usable articles no longer suitable for mili- 
tary training and combat purposes. 

The QMC made such savings at dif- 
ferent stages in the process of procurement 
and distribution of supplies. For example, 
the consumption of critical and strategic 

1 Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, OQMG, 5-9 Oct 
42, p. 2, remarks of Col Robert M, Falkenau, Chief of 
OQMG Salv Br, 337. 

- Col. John V. Rowan, "Salvage, The World's 
Greatest Business," QMR, XXII (November-Decem- 
ber 1942), 50. 



REPAIRING ARMY SHOES IN 1918, American Salvage Department, Tours, France. 

materials was held to a minimum by the 
use of substitutes in the research and de- 
velopment of suitable military equipment, 3 
and conservation purposes also were served 
by the elimination of excess stockages 
through inventory control. 4 Economy in 
the care and disposition of materiel, how- 
ever, provided the most effective means of 
limiting total military requirements and 
conserving resources. 

Unfortunately, the average American 
soldier was convinced that the capacity of 
the nation to produce commodities was 
unlimited. He was accustomed to relative 
carelessness and extravagance rather than 
frugality in his handling of material goods. 
In fact, a lack of discipline in supply 

matters had always characterized the 
Army. Confronted by evidence of the un- 
avoidable waste inherent in war and sur- 
rounded by mountains of equipment from 
seemingly inexhaustible stores, the soldier 
did not readily acquire an active concern 
and respect for military property. Indoc- 
trination and training were therefore 
fundamental in obtaining his co-operation 
in the proper care and use of materiel. At 
the same time, Quartermaster conserva- 
tion efforts also required the development 

3 For QMC activities in this field, see Erna Risch, 
The Quartermaster Corps: Organization, Supply, and Serv- 
WAR II (Washin gton, 1953), [SOT] 

J /farf. JCh. X.| 



of a program of specific activities, such as 
the operation of repair shops, to keep mili- 
tary property in working order. 

Although the Army had always main- 
tained a program for the repair and re- 
habilitation of equipment and for the dis- 
position of unserviceable articles;"' not 
until World War I was the first systematic 
effort made to utilize the waste of armies 
in the field. In August 1917 the Office of 
The Quartermaster General (OQMG) 
formed a special unit of eleven officers that 
was sent to France to study the salvage 
methods of the French and British and to 
devise and install a complete salvage sys- 
tem for the American Expeditionary 
Forces. Partly as a result of the studies of 
this unit, the first comprehensive orders 
on salvage were issued in January 1918. (i 
Earlier in the month an organization to 
handle all salvage functions had been set 
up under the direction of the chief quar- 
termaster of the American Expeditionary 

When the United States entered World 
War II, there was forced upon the country 
for the first time in its history the neces- 
sity of conserving and reclaiming not only 
war materials but practically every other 
item of ordinary use. Scrap metal was 
needed to produce steel; waste materials 
were essential in the manufacture of 
woolen cloth and paper; and greases and 
fats were in demand for the production 
not only of munitions but also of soap. A 
heterogenous mass of other items became 
valuable in the crisis. In total war salvage 
was essential to military success, and the 
civilian at home as well as the soldier in 
the zone of interior and in the theater of 
operations participated in the program. 

The expansion of maintenance and sal- 
vage activities, however, took place rela- 
tively late in the war. It naturally occurred 

in direct proportion to the quantities of 
used and unserviceable articles accumu- 
lated in the course of training and combat 
operations. Early in the emergency period 
the need for conserving Quartermaster 
items of supply was minimized because 
they were mainly commercial in type. As 
military requirements pyramided and de- 
mands were made upon the United States 
for the relief of populations overseas, the 
strain upon the production of civilian- 
type goods became greater. Because it 
handled commodities basic to the support 
of the civilian economy, the QMC was 
particularly vulnerable to criticism. When 
shortages increased and rationing was 
tightened, actual or alleged waste of cloth- 
ing and food by the Army drew immediate 
and vehement protests. In order to main- 
tain civilian morale and secure the co- 
operation essential to the prosecution of an 
"all-out" war, an expanded and increas- 
ingly effective program of conservation 
was needed. 

Administrative Organization 

At the time of Pearl Harbor, the QMC 
had broad responsibility for salvage activi- 
ties, which included the salvage and dis- 
posal of most of the worn-out items of 
materiel originally procured by the many 
supply agencies of the War Department 
and of all waste products, except so-called 
industrial scrap from manufacturing oper- 
ations in arsenals, depots, or commercial 

' For discussion of QMC responsibility for repair 
and reclamation of Quartermaster items, sec below, 
Chapter II J 

" (1) WD GO 9, 29 Jan 18. (2) The concise term 
'"salvage" was adopted to replace the words "con- 
servation" and "reclamation." See WD GO 106, 15 
Nov 18. 



plants. 7 Responsibility for industrial scrap 
had only recently been transferred from 
the QMC to the chiefs of the individual 
supply services because such scrap was 
being produced in large quantities and 
technical personnel of the particular in- 
stallation involved were best qualified to 
handle it. Furthermore, while the proceeds 
from sales of general salvage were returned 
to the miscellaneous receipts of the Treas- 
ury Department, those from the sale of in- 
dustrial scrap were returned to the appro- 
priation from which funds for procurement 
of the material had come. 8 

In the years following the OQMG re- 
organization in 1920, a salvage unit in the 
Supply Division had been responsible for 
the disposition of unserviceable property 
and waste material. On the eve of the at- 
tack on Pearl Harbor this unit, known as 
the Salvage, Reclamation, and Surplus 
Property Branch, was supervising Quar- 
termaster conservation and reclamation 
activities. 9 It was transferred to the newly 
created Service Installations Division 
when the OQMG was reorganized along 
functional lines early in 1942. 10 The sal- 
vage function, however, was not com- 
pletely centralized in this division, for cer- 
tain of the major commodity units, notably 
those in charge of subsistence and of fuels, 
assumed and retained full responsibility 
for the conservation of their respective 
classes of supply. 11 During World War II, 
important responsibilities wer& therefore 
carried out by commodity divisions as in- 
tegral phases of their activities, while 
others were necessarily discharged by 
collaboration of two or more units under 
executive supervision. 

The organization of conservation activi- 
ties and programs remained relatively 
loose throughout the war, not merely 
because the definition of conservation was 

broad but because the activities of the 
Corps were organized primarily for the 
performance of supply duties that were 
more immediately pressing. As conserva- 
tion activities expanded and as the formu- 
lation of aggressive indoctrination pro- 
grams emphasized their growing signifi- 
cance, two noticeable organizational 
trends developed. On the one hand, a 
marked degree of centralization and ex- 
pansion of pertinent functional activities 
occurred within the Service Installations 
Division. On the other, where the attain- 
ment of conservation objectives was in- 
cidental to the operation of broader pro- 
grams, as in the administration of food 
service, the organization of the division 
concerned frequently was reshaped to 
adapt it to these objectives and to enable 
it to sponsor special programs of conserva- 
tion. The result was a considerable re- 
orientation of the OQMG organization to 
the purposes of conservation. 

Relations With the Services of Supply 

Before March 1 942 The Quartermaster 
General had dealt directly with the field 
and had issued directions on both policy 
and procedure, particularly in reference 
to matters of general salvage. His responsi- 
bilities and authority were changed when 

7 (1) AR 30-2145, 28 Apr 31, sub: QMC — Un- 
serviceable Prop, Including Waste Material. (2) AR 
30-2110, 27 Apr 31, sub: QMC — Salv and Laundry 

8 (1) WD Cir 143, Sec. I, 15 Jul 41, sub: Disposal 
of Scrap. (2) Min of Salv and Reclm Conf. p. 7. re- 
marks of Col Falkenau. 

" (1) OQMG OO 25-F, 15 May 41, sub: Orgn of 
Sup Div. (2) This unit had also handled laundry ac- 
tivities, but in July 1941 a separate Laundry Branch 
was established. OQMG OO 153, 15 Jul 41. 

>« OQMG OO 84, 31 Mar 42, sub: Orgn of QMC. 

" Chief of Salv, Reclm, and Surplus Prop Br to 
Dir of Sv Instts Div, OQMG, 25 Jun 43, sub: Conf 
Regarding Conserv Program. 



the Services of Supply (SOS) was estab- 
lished. A salvage unit within the Distribu- 
tion Division, SOS, became responsible for 
formulating policies pertaining to salvage 
operations, for co-ordinating and super- 
vising all salvage operations involving 
more than one military agency, for con- 
sulting and co-ordinating with the various 
salvage sections of the War Production 
Board ( WPB) on Army salvage problems, 
and for conducting inspections of salvage 
operations at large scrap-generating in- 
stallations under Army jurisdiction. 12 
From March 1942 until the summer of 
1943, The Quartermaster General func- 
tioned as a staff officer of the SOS in 
supervising salvage activities, and clearly 
denned relationships with the SOS and 
with the field were only gradually at- 

Although in the spring of 1942 a regula- 
tion had reaffirmed the traditional respon- 
sibility of The Quartermaster General for 
the handling of all Army salvage with the 
exception of exchangeable property and 
of scrap resulting directly from manufac- 
turing operations, difficulties soon de- 
veloped. 13 On 8June Headquarters, SOS, 
directed each of the corps area com- 
manders to designate and report to the 
Salvage Section, SOS, the name of one 
officer who would be directly responsible 
for salvage operations in his corps area. 
They were also ordered to establish at 
each post and station under their jurisdic- 
tion a suitable organization to insure close 
supervision of the collection and disposal 
of salvageable material and scrap. Each 
supply service was likewise directed to 
formulate a plan and to establish an or- 
ganization to handle salvage operations in 
the zone of interior. 14 These directions 
caused immediate confusion, both in the 
field and in Washington, since they ap- 

parently ignored the existing Quarter- 
master salvage organization. 

The chief of the Service Installations 
Division, OQMG, reminded Headquar- 
ters, SOS, that no change had been made 
in Quartermaster responsibility for han- 
dling salvage and that the QMC, as re- 
quired by Army Regulations, had had for 
many years a completely functioning or- 
ganization, plan, and procedure for the 
handling of salvage, which included a sal- 
vage officer in every post , camp, and sta- 
tion and a corps area salvage officer as 
assistant to the corps area quartermaster. 
The latter was charged with the super- 
vision of all salvage activities throughout 
the corps area. He went on to add that it 
was generally understood at a conference 
held in the SOS on 28 May that salvage 
officers were to be appointed in each sup- 
ply service only for the purpose of main- 
taining liaison with Quartermaster officers 
in order to facilitate the flow of dormant 
scrap to them, and for supervising the 
handling of industrial scrap. 15 It seemed 
to him that SOS instructions tended "to 
create multiple authority as to salvage be- 
tween the Quartermaster Corps and other 
services and to provide for the formulation 
of entirely independent plans -and pro- 
cedures for the handling and disposition 
of salvage in the Zone of Interior." 16 
Headquarters, SOS, confirmed the inter- 
pretation made by the OQMG of the in- 

'- See SOS Orgn Manual, 30 Sep 42, p. 302.1 L. 

11 PR 18-T, 19 May 42, sub: Disp of Surplus and 
Unserviceable Prop. 

" Ltr, TAG to TQMG it al., 8 Jun +2, sub: Salv 
Procedure, SPX 400.7 (6-1-42) MO-SPPD-M. 

15 The 8 June directive, which classified scrap as 
"dormant" and "industrial," defined dormant scrap 
as "miscellaneous scrap including the usual accumu- 
lations at posts, camps, and stations.'' 

l " Memo, Col Charles S. Hamilton, OQMG, for 
Chief of Distr Br, SOS, 15 Jun 42, sub: Salv Proce- 
dure, 400.93. 



tent of the conference on 28 May and re- 
quested that all necessary co-operation 
and liaison be established by The Quar- 
termaster General with other supply serv- 
ices and field agencies of the QMC in 
order that salvage might move promptly 
into productive channels. 17 

To eliminate the confusion that had re- 
sulted from the 8 June order, a new direc- 
tive clarified the division of responsibility 
between the SOS Salvage Section and the 
supply services. 

Only matters affecting policy, controver- 
sial matters that involve more than one mili- 
tary agency, and matters that should be 
brought to the attention of the Commanding 
General, Services of Supply, will be referred 
to the Salvage Section, Distribution Branch, 
Procurement and Distribution Division, 
Services of Supply. Matters pertaining to 
technical advice will be referred to the War 
Production Board, or to salvage technicians 
employed by the Supply Services.'" 

While technical advice was to be pro- 
vided by the QMC and the other supply 
services, the SOS Salvage Section began 
at this time to employ its own staff of sal- 
vage technicians to assist field salvage 
officers where unusual difficulty was en- 
countered in moving scrap. 19 The section 
took legitimate measures to co-ordinate 
the action of the supply services and that 
of the service commands. In addition it 
had authority to deal directly with field 
units, and in an increasing number of 
cases the SOS Salvage Section issued di- 
rectives to these agencies on its own initia- 
tive, without consulting The Quarter- 
master General. Since these instructions 
were often in conflict with those of the 
OQMG, confusion was created in the 
field. Throughout this period Maj. Gen. 
Edmund B. Gregory, The Quartermaster 
General, insisted that specific directives, 
except for broad general policies an- 

nounced by the SOS, should issue from his 
office and that the actual direction of field 
salvage was an operating function that 
should be handled at the supply service 
level. As a result of his complaint, Head- 
quarters, SOS, agreed that salvage direc- 
tives to the Army as a whole would be 
published only after the concurrences of 
the General Staff and the commanding 
generals of the Army Air Forces (AAF) 
and the Army Ground Forces (AGF) had 
been obtained, and after consultation with 
the chief of the supply service concerned. "" 
At the same time, the division of re- 
sponsibilities for salvage operations was 
restated. The SOS Salvage Section, oper- 
ating as a policy and control unit of the 
Commanding General, SOS, was to for- 
mulate policies pertaining to salvage oper- 
ations, co-ordinate and supervise salvage 
activities of the supply services, and, when 
necessary, deal directly with the com- 
manding generals of all service commands 
on salvage matters, keeping the appro- 
priate chief of supply service informed. 
The Quartermaster General remained re- 
sponsible for all general salvage at posts, 
camps, and stations, while the chiefs of the 
supply services continued to supervise the 
salvaging of industrial scrap resulting 
from manufacturing operations. The 
Quartermaster General and the other 
chiefs of the supply services were author - 

17 1st Ind, Chief of Distr Br, SOS, to TQMG, 18 
Jim 42, on memo cited above. In, 161 

ltJ Ltr. TAG to CGs of All CAs, 27 Jun 42, sub: 
Info on Salv Procedure, SPX 400.7 (6-23-42) MO- 

lu Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 6, remarks of 
Lt Col Don B. Kates, SOS. 

-" (1) Dir of Sv Instls Div to Chief of OP&C Div, 
OQMG, 24 Jul 42, sub: Request for Certain Info 
Relating to QMC Opns. (2) Memo, Dtr of Control 
Div, SOS, for TQMG, 17 Sep 42, no sub, 400.93. 
(3) Memo, TAG for Chiefs of Sup Svs, 26 Sep 42, 
sub: Responsibility and Authority Regarding Salv 
Activities, SPX 400.74 (9-23-42) SPDDM-MP-R-M. 



ized to prepare all technical and training 
manuals dealing with salvage procedure 
and operations and to issue directives 
based on policies of the SOS. 21 Until the 
summer of 1943, when complete staff re- 
sponsibility was transferred to Headquar- 
ters, SOS, which by that time had been 
renamed Army Service Forces (ASF), this 
division of authority governed the rela- 
tionship between the SOS and the QMC. 

Relations With Civilian Agencies 

During World War II certain civilian 
as well as military agencies had important 
responsibilities for directing unserviceable 
supplies and scrap into the proper chan- 
nels of civilian and industrial consump- 
tion. It was some time before the need for 
central governmental co-ordination be- 
came acute, and not until the Bureau of 
Industrial Conservation was organized in 
the Office of Production Management 
(OPM), later transferred to the WPB, was 
there a central agency definitely charged 
with the development of national pro- 
grams of conservation. 2 ' 2 Although the 
bureau had developed plans for civilian 
participation in salvage activities by the 
fall of 1941, it did not establish regional 
machinery to supervise the scrap industry 
and co-operate with military field agencies 
until the summer of 1942. 

The direct concern of the WPB and the 
Office of Price Administration (OPA) 
with problems of allocations to consumers, 
prices, and other matters having a bear- 
ing on salvage activities, led to close co- 
operation between these agencies and the 
QMC. Moreover, vhe early arrangements 
made by Headquarters, SOS, with the 
WPB were an important factor in develop- 
ments leading to the reorganization of the 
War Department administrative ma- 

chinery for handling salvage matters in 

The Army- WPB administrative system 
for handling salvage, as well as many 
basic policies, stemmed from decisions 
made at a general conference held late in 
May 1942 and attended by representatives 
of the WPB and its Bureau of Industrial 
Conservation, of SOS headquarters, and 
of the chiefs of the Army supply services. 
The directive issued by the Army follow- 
ing this conference not only provided for 
the installation of an integrated adminis- 
trative system throughout the Army but 
also defined the services that the WPB 
would furnish.- f The WPB was to provide 
technical assistance to Army salvage 
officers, follow up Army salvage in the 
hands of civilian dealers to see that it was 
not hoarded, and control by allocation the 
flow of material into proper industrial 

In general, dormant scrap was to be 
handled by the Bureau of Industrial Con- 
servation, which at the time of these ar- 
rangements was establishing regional 
offices and making their consultatory serv- 
ices available to all corps areas and supply 
services. Since dormant scrap was usually 
sold to scrap dealers rather than con- 
sumers and the WPB expected to com- 
plete the licensing of such dealers by 1 
June, SOS ordered sales to be made only 

L> ' Memo cited above, |n. 20(3)| 

-- The sponsorship of organized conservation by the 
government had its beginning in the Advisory Com- 
mission to the Council of National Defense. Later a 
number of special corporations — the Rubber Reserve 
Company, the Metals Reserve Company, the Defense 
Supplies Corporation, and War Materials Incorpo- 
rated — under the direction of the Reconstruction 
Finance Corporation rendered invaluable assistance 
to the Army in utilizing and disposing of certain 
salvage materials. 

- : Ltr, TAG to TQMG et al., fi Jun 42, sub: Salv 
Procedure, SPX 400.7 (6-1-42) MO SPP*D D. 



SALVAGING SCRAP MATERIAL. Workers at the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot 
bale scrap fabric to be sold at auction (left), and sort scrap material left over from the manu- 
facture of Army uniforms (right), October 1941. 

to licensed dealers. Where any consider- 
able accumulation of miscellaneous scrap 
or dormant scrap of one classification was 
to be sold, SOS directed Army salvage 
officers to report it to the bureau or its 
nearest regional office before disposal. In 
the case of industrial scrap, SOS directed 
that contacts be made with pertinent scrap 
units of the Materials Division, WPB, in 
Washington, D. C, prior to disposal of 
ferrous materials of carload lot, or greater 
quantities of nonferrous and other mate- 
rials important for war production. 24 Ac- 
tual control of the movement of scrap from 
dealers to industrial consumers was the 
responsibility of the Allocation Section of 
the Materials Division, WPB. 

The original arrangement with the 
WPB also produced a tentative statement 
of policy regarding co-operation by the 

Army with the WPB drive for collection 
of civilian scrap. Initially, Army salvage 
operations were to be directed toward 
utilization of materials accumulated by 
military agencies, but accumulations of 
materials discovered away from military 
reservations were to be reported to the 
Bureau of Industrial Conservation or its 
regional representatives. On 27 June 1942, 
SOS directed The Quartermaster General 
to publish instructions to all salvage offi- 
cers outlining the procedure for reporting 

21 Chiefs of supply services and the WPB were to 
determine these amounts by agreement. When sale 
of either dormant or industrial scrap was made to 
any dealer, mill, foundry, or other consumer, the 
WPB scrap units were to be informed of the name of 
the purchaser, the type and tonnage of material, and 
the date of transaction in order to enable the WPB 
to follow up on disposition, This information was 
vital to the WPB in allocating materials to con- 



such large accumulations of civilian 
scrap. 25 It was further agreed that Army 
salvage installations would be governed 
solely by policies , directives, and opera- 
tional instructions announced by the War 
Department rather than by those issued 
directly from the WPB, but a clear state- 
ment of policy on this matter was not cir- 
culated until April 1943. 2S 

When the WPB was established, the 
OPA relinquished its regulatory functions 
relating to civilian supply. The OPA con- 
tinued, nevertheless, to administer and ex- 
pand its advisory and regulatory functions 
pertaining to price control of salvage ma- 
terials. Its salvage division and regional 
offices were increasingly helpful to the 
QMC on problems relating to price ceil- 
ings and other aspects of OPA regulations 
affecting specific scrap and salvage items, 
and the OQMG co-operated closely with 
this agency during the war. 

Relations With the Field 

The conservation of Army materiel was 
a field activity carried out largely in lower 
echelons of the War Department and the 
Army in many and widely dispersed geo- 
graphical locations. The success of the 
Quartermaster program depended upon 
effective supervision, but this was difficult 
to achieve be.cause in the conduct of con- 
servation programs through supply and 
command channels The Quartermaster 
General acted as a special staff agent of 
the SOS, with varying powers of super- 

Command Agencies 

The Quartermaster conservation pro- 
gram was promoted in two ways. First, 
efforts were concentrated on fostering the 
proper upkeep, care, and use of Quarter- 

master materiel by troops. For this pur- 
pose the OQMG formulated the doctrine 
and provided the technical media to be 
used by the AGF and the AAF. The co- 
operation of these command agencies in 
applying Quartermaster conservation pol- 
icies was necessary because they were re- 
sponsible for promulgating and supervis- 
ing indoctrination programs in troop 
units. In this instance, where troop com- 
manders had full responsibility for the 
conduct of conservation programs, rela- 
tionships were relatively clear-cut. Second, 
the OQMG supervised specific conserva- 
tion activities conducted by field estab- 
lishments in the zone of interior. These ac- 
tivities involved primarily the receipt of 
used and unserviceable materiel from 
troops, the determination of its disposition 
by renovation, reuse, or disposal, the re- 
pair of suitable articles, and the distribu- 
tion and reissue of renovated property. 

It was at this point that interdepend- 
ence of action between troop unit com- 
manders and Quartermaster supply agen- 
cies was greatest, and divergent responsi- 
bilities produced conflicting points of view. 
Army Regulations prescribed that articles 
of unserviceable property were to be 
turned over by using organizations to the 
QMC for salvage. 27 In the process, officers 
receiving the property were empowered 
to return to the using unit any articles 
considered fit for continued use ,to stipu- 

25 Ltr, TAG to Chiefs of Sup Svs ei ai, 27 Jun 42, 
sub: Info on Salv Procedure, SPX 4-00.7 (6-23-42) 

26 AGO Memo S30-14-43, 6 Apr 43, sub: Policy 
Relating to Domestic Salv. 

27 (1) AR 20-35, sub: IGD— Insp of Prop for Con- 
demnation. (2) AR 35-6640, sub: Finance Dept — 
Lost, Destroyed, Damaged, or Unserviceable Prop. 
(3) AR 30-2145, sub: QMC— Unserviceable Prop, 
Including Waste Material. (4) AR 30-2110, sub: 
QMC— Salv and Laundry Activities. (5) AR 615-40, 
sub: Enlisted Men — C&E. 



late that property in need of repair be re- 
turned to the unit after processing by the 
nearest available repair shop, or to rec- 
ommend that an individual be assessed for 
damage or loss of property resulting from 
negligence or more culpable action. 

On the other hand, troop unit com- 
manders were concerned with obtaining 
the best possible and most presentable 
equipment for their men. In the past, in 
fact, their reputations, as well as those of 
their supply officers and sergeants, had 
been enhanced by their ability to obtain 
suitable supplies and replacements. Quar- 
termaster responsibility for conservation 
encountered directly the insistence of 
many commanders upon independence 
with regard to supply of their troop units. 
Attempts by Quartermaster representa- 
tives through vigorous and conscientious 
administration of inspection to bring pres- 
sure upon unwilling commanders to retain 
usable equipment often caused them to 
resort to various subterfuges, such as muti- 
lation of equipment to insure its condem- 
nation or to prevent its repair and return 
to the user. This area of intermingling re- 
sponsibilities was later to be thoroughly 
examined and modified so as to encourage 
command responsibility and respect for 

Service Commands 

The most important contribution of the 
Quartermaster program lay in promoting 
conservation among the troops, who used 
the great bulk" of materiel, but the success 
of the program depended on the effective- 
ness with which the corps administered its 
salvage activities in installations of the 
SOS (later ASF). Its responsibilities here 
included the organization of facilities to 
process the large quantities of materiel 

becoming unserviceable in all echelons of 
the Army, other than that actually con- 
sumed or maintained in combat areas. 
The QMC arranged for local repair of 
Quartermaster items used by troops sta- 
tioned in the zone of interior, and for the 
renovation, reissue, and disposal of vast 
quantities of articles turned in by them in 
the course of their training and on their 
departure for overseas duty. It also made 
arrangements for handling the ever-in- 
creasing volume of materiel returned from 
theaters in the form of usable goods and 

Although subject to the supervision of 
The Quartermaster General, such salvage 
and reclamation activities were carried on 
in the post, camp, and station installations 
of the service commands, which had re- 
placed the corps areas in the summer of 
1942. iS The corps areas had long exercised 
general supervision over these activities, 
although commanders were responsible 
only for "the collection of all salvageable 
property and material at each post, camp, 
and station under their jurisdiction." Such 
salvage was turned over to the QMC for 
disposal by procedures determined by The 
Quartermaster General, but corps area 
commanders were responsible for "prompt 
disposal" by agencies under their super- 
vision 29 

New and broader control, however, was 
vested in the commanding generals of the 
service commands. Under policies pro- 
mulgated by SOS and directives on pro- 
cedure issued by The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral, they exercised "supervision and con- 
trol of all salvage activities (including 

-"WD GO 35, 22 Jul 4-2, sub: Redesignation of 
WD OAs to SvCs. 

L ' :i Ltr, TAG to CGs of All CAs el at., 27 Jun 42, 
sub: Info on Salv Procedure, SPX 400.7 (6-23-42) 



reclamation shops of the Quartermaster 
Corps) at posts, camps, and stations; at 
stations not under the command of the 
service commander, including arsenals, 
depots, ports of embarkation, and staging 
areas; and installations of the Army Air 
Forces." 30 Special repair installations 
under the control of chiefs of technical 
services were specifically excluded from 
the supervision of the commanding gen- 
erals of the service commands. 

The chief of the OQMG Salvage 
Branch felt that the QMC would benefit 
from the establishment of service com- 
mands. Although the effect was to remove 
local quartermasters from the direct juris- 
diction of The Quartermaster General, 
the fact that he could now issue instruc- 
tions to the service commanders in his 
capacity as a staff officer of the SOS 
seemed to strengthen and improve his 
position in relation to the field. 31 In prac- 
tice, the interposition of another echelon 
of supervision between The Quarter- 
master General and station officials 
proved an obstacle to the speedy delivery 
of directives that were issued to the field 
through channels of command. The 
OQMG received many complaints from 
field salvage officers and repeatedly called 
the attention of the service commands to 
the fact that directives were not reaching 
the operating agencies where they were 
needed. 32 This was particularly serious 
when local officers received binding regu- 
lations of WPB, OPA, and other govern- 
ment agencies only after infractions had 
already occurred. To eliminate this diffi- 
culty it was necessary for the OQMG to 
secure authorization for, and make ex- 
tensive use of, a direct mailing list of local 
offices to which it could send government 
regulations and other important instruc- 
tional material. 33 

Divided staff responsibility in the super- 
vision of field activities in itself raised 
problems. The Quartermaster General 
was solely responsible for technical super- 
vision of these activities, while the Com- 
manding General, SOS, through his im- 
mediate staff agencies was responsible for 
general operating supervision of activities 
in the service commands. Co-operation 
between the service commands and the 
OQMG and the general quality of super- 
vision were not improved where disagree- 
ments arose over staff responsibilities, and 
particularly where SOS agencies issued di- 
rectives without co-ordination and some- 
times in conflict with instructions of the 
OQMG. When the ASF assumed full 
staff responsibility for salvage activities in 
the summer of 1943, this trend in the 
supervision of field activities was reversed. 
Then full responsibility for field programs 
was vested in The Quartermaster General. 

In the meantime, regardless of what the 
final salvage responsibilities of the QMC 
and other agencies were to be, the con- 
servation program was of vital importance 
in the immediate conduct of field activi- 
ties. The OQMG was concerned with the 
development of effective procedures and 
techniques ,but these meant nothing un- 
less adequate supervision was provided. 

Efforts were therefore made to bring 
service command activities under more 
effective supervision. The OQMG became 

™ AGO Memo W30-3-42, IS Sep 42, sub: Au- 
thority and Responsibility of CGs of SvCs on Salv 

11 Col Falkenau to Dir of Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 
27 Jul 42, sub: Manual for SvCs. 

Chief of Salv and Surplus Prop Br to 
DQMG, 13 Aug 42, no sub. (2) Ltr, Brig Gen Frank 
F. Scowden, OQMG, to CGs of All SvCs, 18 Aug 42, 
sub: Cirs and Does of Instruction. 

" (1) Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for Hq SOS, 
13 Oct 42, sub: Proposed Mailing List, (2) Min of 
Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 44. 



preoccupied with this problem soon after 
Pearl Harbor when field inspections em- 
phasized the need for adequate regional 
supervision. In May 1942 the chief of the 
Personnel Division, OQMG, asked the 
General Staff to authorize an additional 
officer, with the rank of lieutenant colonel, 
in each corps area headquarters as salvage 
and reclamation officer, to devote his full 
time and energies to the duties of salvage 
and reclamation. The emphasis placed 
upon rank was deliberate in order that the 
officers might have enough prestige to 
impress upon others the importance of the 
salvage work. 3 * Although several of these 
officers were on duty by early summer, the 
program did not get fully under way until 
October. Then an orientation conference 
was held in Washington, D. C, for the sal- 
vage and reclamation officers of the serv- 
ice commands. Comprehensive instruction 
was given on various subjects, questions of 
policy were cleared up, and particular 
emphasis was placed on the necessity of 
securing qualified assistants for the service 
command staffs. 35 

These salvage and reclamation officers 
were responsible for supervising and in- 
specting the salvage and reclamation ac- 
tivities of post, camp, and station officers. 
This meant that they disposed of scrap, a 
salvage activity that was Army-wide in 
scope, and that they also supervised Quar- 
termaster repair shops. While these offi- 
cers were chosen ostensibly to represent 
the QMC, many of them envisioned for 
themselves a broad mission of supervising 
the salvage and conservation activities of 
all the technical services. Because of this 
seemingly dual position, the Chief of Staff, 
SOS, was later to characterize such an 
officer as a "peculiar individual." 36 Re- 
gional responsibilities obviously needed 

Service command progress in exercising 
close supervision of local activities was dis- 
couraging. During the first year or more 
after the institution of the salvage and 
reclamation program, none of the service 
commands had sufficient supervisory per- 
sonnel to handle the many vital functions 
at headquarters and at the same time con- 
duct regular and frequent inspections of 
activities at posts. The OQMG made re- 
peated efforts to obtain more personnel, 
but as late as July 1943 — immediately 
before the transfer of salvage responsibility 
to the ASF — no action had been taken to 
fill the desired personnel quotas in any 
service command. 37 

Upon the development of adequate 
means of supervision under the direction 
of the commanding generals of the service 
commands depended much of the pro- 
gram for decentralization of administra- 
tive authority advocated by Headquar- 
ters, SOS. The concentration of operating 
supervision at the service command level 
was part of the theory underlying SOS or- 
ganization, and early in 1943 the Control 
Division, SOS , brought pressure on The 
Quartermaster General to decentralize to 
the service commands all possible routine 
supervision of Quartermaster activities. 38 

■ 1J (1) Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, pp. 3, 106. (2) 
Memo, Lt Col Kester L. Hastings, Pers Div, OQMG, 
for CG SOS, 9 May 42, sub: Authorization of Pers 
for CA Salv and Reclm Activities. 

Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, passim. 
Memo, Maj Gen Wilhelm D. Styer for ACofS 
for Opns, SOS, 21 Nov 42, sub: Salv Activities. 

" (1) Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for ACofS 
for Pers, SOS, 20 Oct 42, sub: Allotments of Pers for 
SvCs. (2) Memo, Hamilton for Chief of Distr Div, 
SOS, 16 Feb 43, sub: Additional Offs at SvC Hq. (3) 
Memo, Hamilton for Chief of Production Div, ASF, 
30 Jun 43, same sub, 

38 (1) Memo, ACofS for Opns, SOS, for TQMG, 
30 Jan 43, sub: Elimination of Unnecessary Over- 
lappings and Duplications of Functions, (2) Brig 
Gen Harold A. Barnes, DQMG, to Sv Instls Div, 
OQMG, 10 Feb 43, sub: Decentralization of Action. 



While several specific salvage controls had 
already been delegated to the service com- 
mands, The Quartermaster General felt 
that others should be retained because of 
the lack of personnel in the service com- 
mands. 39 In particular, he objected to 
delegating authority to approve indefinite- 
quantity contracts for the disposal of cer- 
tain waste materials, the supervision and 
approval of which required knowledge of 
fluctuating market conditions. Supervision 
by the OQMG of these long-term con- 
tracts had increased the revenue from 
them by many thousands of dollars per 
month, and he argued that delegation of 
this authority could not be justified on the 
basis of economy to the government. 
Headquarters, ASF, agreed to his reten- 
tion of this control, but only until such 
time as sufficient qualified salvage per- 
sonnel became available to the service 
commands. 40 

A similar problem arose in the summer 
of 1943. The Deputy Chief of Staff for 
Service Commands, ASF, proposed that 
technical maintenance inspectors attached 
to the OQMG be assigned to the service 
commands to conduct "continuing inspec- 
tions" from that level. The Quartermaster 
General objected to this proposal because 
he had not been able to find enough quali- 
fied inspectors for service in all areas 
under the projected decentralization. 
More fundamentally, he opposed the 
move on the ground that, as long as direc- 
tives charged him with insuring the effec- 
tiveness of Quartermaster operations cen- 
tral inspections by the OQMG and other 
legitimate working contacts with local ac- 
tivities were necessary. A small group for 
supervision and inspection was retained in 
the OQMG, but General Gregory agreed 
to eliminate certain sources of irritation to 
service commanders by instructing all 

OQMG representatives visiting service 
commands to advise commanders of the 
purpose and nature of their visits and to 
confine their activities to those arranged 
for unless otherwise requested by com- 

Most service commanders were con- 
sidered co-operative in administering 
Quartermaster programs, and many sal- 
vage and reclamation officers rendered 
oustanding service under Quartermaster 
direction despite being handicapped by 
lack of personnel. 42 On the other hand, 
those service commanders who were skep- 
tical of the value of salvage work or who 
were not disposed to be helpful were able 
at times to rely upon a literal interpreta- 
tion of the command prerogative to ob- 
struct the exercise of necessary supervision 
by The Quartermaster General. 

Although the need for closer supervision 
of Quartermaster conservation activities 
was clear, little could be done to clarify 
the responsibilities of the QMC and the 
service commands until the established 
regulations and procedures covering the 
disposition of unserviceable property, 
usually referred to simply as the "salvage 
procedure," were revised. 

Clarification of Procedures 

An attack upon the inherited salvage 
system materialized in the fall of 1942. 

Col Falkenau to Dir of Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 13 
Feb 43, sub: Decentralization of Action. 

"» (1) Memo, Hq ASF for'TQJMG, 18 Mar 43, sub: 
Indefinite Quantity Contracts for Sale of Waste Ma- 
terials. (2) Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for ACofS 
for Opns, ASF, 24 Mar 43, same sub. (3) Memo, 
ACofS for Opns, ASF, for TQMG, 2 Apr 43, same 

(1) Chief of Maint Br to Dir of Sv Instls Div, 
OQMG, 25 Aug 43, sub: Decentralization of Con- 
tinuing Insps. (2) Memo, TQMG for DCofS for 
SvCs, ASF, 30 Aug 43, same sub. 

4 - Interv, OQMG historian with Lt Col John P. 
Loomis, Exec Off, Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 22 Feb 44. 



Late in November the Chief of Staff, SOS, 
expressed the developing concern in staff 

The salvage activities of the Army are in a 
confused and disorganized state. Terms have 
not been assigned definite meanings. A large 
number of agencies are involved. Paper work 
is excessive. A great mass of Army Regula- 
tions, War Department Circulars and memo- 
randa have been issued. " 

He went on to add that "the importance of 
salvage activities increases in direct pro- 
portion to the increasing difficulty in meet- 
ing the requirements of the Army." Fur- 
thermore, while many of the War Depart- 
ment circulars and memoranda empha- 
sized the importance of conservation, they 
continued to require actions inconsistent 
with the existing stringency of raw mate- 
rials because they had been written before 
the war. 

He directed the Assistant Chief of Staff 
for Operations ,SOS, to assume responsi- 
bility for simplifying and co-ordinating the 
various organizations and activities affect- 
ing salvage. He ordered that terms be 
clearly defined; that salvage and reclama- 
tion activities be co-ordinated; that paper- 
work be reduced and classification of prop- 
erty for disposal purposes be simplified; 
that peacetime standards of "economical 
repair" be eliminated; and that regula- 
tions, circulars, and memoranda affecting 
salvage activities be consolidated into a 
single, compact manual. Of special sig- 
nificance for the future administration of 
salvage disposal was his directive that au- 
thority and responsibility of staff divisions, 
supply and administrative services, the 
Inspector General's Department, and field 
operating agencies for salvage activities be 
established clearly and that operating 
functions be decentralized to the field, as- 
signing to SOS agencies only such super- 

visory functions as were required. 

To initiate the necessary changes, Head- 
quarters, SOS, arranged a conference of 
representatives of the interested agencies 
on 2 December. " In preparation for this 
meeting, the head of the Salvage Branch, 
OQMG, drafted an analysis of the chief of 
staff's directive, which was defensive of 
the existing salvage system. His analysis 
was obviously influenced by the direct and 
implied criticisms of the work of the OJVIC 
and the suggestion of reorganization. He 
felt that the confusion and abuses had 
been greatly overemphasized, and that 
"considering the rapid expansion of the 
Army and the tremendous influx of inex- 
perienced officers and enlisted personnel, 
an organization job on salvage has been 
done which compares favorably with any- 
thing which would have been accom- 
plished in an industrial organization or 
elsewhere under parallel conditions." 15 
This reference to achievement under diffi- 
culties failed, of course, to offer a solution 
to the recognized need for clarification of 
supervisory responsibilities. Later, repre- 
sentatives of the OQMG took a leading 
part in clarifying procedure and responsi- 

Before this could be accomplished, how- 
ever, a careful analysis had to be made of 
the existing regulatory system governing 
the disposition of unserviceable property. 
That system had been set forth in certain 
basic Army Regulations that had been 
formulated as a result of varied and con- 
flicting experience over the long, peace- 
time period following World War I, when 

n Memo, Gen Styer for ACofS for Opns, SOS, 21 
Nov 42, sub: Salv Activities. 

! 1 Memo, Chief of Maint, Repair and Salv Br, SOS, 
for TQMG et at, 28 Nov 42, sub: Conf on Activities 
and Regulations Pertaining to Salv. 

4 '- Col Falkenau to Dir of Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 1 
Dec 42, sub: Analysis of 21 Nov Memo. 



accountability and "regularity" in the 
handling of military property were of pri- 
mary interest. 46 Enforcement of these regu- 
lations was generally deemed sufficient to 
accomplish such conservation as was 
needed. In the course of time, numerous 
amendments had been added to the regu- 
lations on the theory that , while property 
accountability and liability should be en- 
forced and property disposition controlled 
by the survey officers and inspectors, their 
actions should be so circumscribed and 
denned that the barrier against malprac- 
tices would be "air-tight" and the observ- 
ance of official policies automatically in- 
sured. The resulting regulations were so 
complex as to be almost impossible of in- 
terpretation and administration. 

At the same time, these regulations 
called for practices not adapted to an 
emergency and wartime situation in which 
the emphasis had shifted from the main- 
tenance of property accountability to an 
expeditious processing of materiel for fur- 
ther military and industrial uses. Probably 
the most important and controversial of 
these practices was the one requiring muti- 
lation or destruction of property submitted 
for condemnation, in order to prevent its 
being resubmitted to an inspector to make 
up shortages in accounts or in order to se- 
cure unauthorized replacement issues. 
Although this practice had been adopted 
to combat commonly encountered meth- 
ods of evading the regulations on property 
accountability and responsibility, the mu- 
tilation or destruction of property useful 
for war purposes or for essential civilian 
needs was open to particular criticism. 

These regulations also covered in detail 
not only the functions of local officers who 
were permitted to act upon instruments of 
property disposition, but also those of the 
overhead agencies having responsibilities 

for the clearing of papers and the approval 
of applicable policies and procedures. 
Both the Chief of Finance and The In- 
spector General, in addition to The Quar- 
termaster General, had important and 
often controlling responsibilities in the dis- 
position procedure. 47 This fact alone pre- 
vented The Quartermaster Corps from ex- 
ercising real control over the conservation 
of most of its supplies in the field and 
tended to hinder the speedy and efficient 
salvaging for which The Quartermaster 
General was held responsible. Because of 
the many agencies involved and because 
of the time-consuming process required to 
amend Army Regulations, a simple pro- 
cedure, useful for wartime purposes, did 
not emerge until two years after Pearl 

When military property became unserv- 
iceable at any time, 48 it could be retired 
from property accounts only by an inven- 
tory and inspection report or a report of 
survey, the procedures for which involved 
a "long, complicated, burdensome series of 
steps." 19 The surveying officer or inspector 
had to decide upon the method for the dis- 
posal of the unserviceable property, and 
no less than eight alternatives had been 
added to the regulations in the years fol- 
lowing World War I. 80 The formality of 
the screening procedure and the necessity 

"Ml) AR 35-6640, sub: Finance Dept— Lost, De- 
stroyed, Damaged, or Unserviceable Prop. (2) AR 
20-35, sub: IGD — Insp of Prop for Condemnation. 

" The Chief of Finance prescribed procedures for 
the conduct of surveys and approved all reports of 
survey, since these were considered fiscal instruments. 
The Inspector General's Department handled most 
inventory and inspection reports and prepared regu- 
lations covering them. 

48 Separate regulations covered the disposition of 
clothing and equipage issued to the enlisted man. See 
AR 615-40. 

4t! Memo, Gen Styer for ACofS for Opns, SOS, 21 
Nov 42, sub: Salv Activities. 

30 (1) AR 20-35, par. 7. (2) AR 35-6640, par. 10. 



of clearances from higher authority caused 
delays and tied up great quantities of 
equipment awaiting disposition. More- 
over, the physical disposition of unserv- 
iceable articles usually awaited the full 
consummation and approval of formal 

The established procedures were also 
inadequate in that technically competent 
individuals were not necessarily appointed 
to act in the disposition of various classes 
of equipment. Numerous communications 
to the field urged competent inspection of 
technical supplies, but it was difficult to 
obtain qualified personnel. Moreover, ap- 
parently no effective steps could be taken 
to counteract the tendency of com- 
manders to assign "miscellaneous" duties 
of this kind to transients or to already busy 
officers to be accomplished on a part-time 
basis. 51 

The establishment of an organization 
staffed by interested personnel trained to 
handle property turned in for disposal 
would afford the most effective means of 
promoting conservation. From a technical 
standpoint, at least, such an organization 
was already available in repair shops. 
Even when unserviceable property was 
not shipped to shops for processing, all but 
the simplest questions of reparability and 
disposition had to be determined by rep- 
resentatives of repair shops or by personnel 
with comparable experience. With the 
possible exception of salvage officers and 
specialists, personnel managing repair and 
reclamation activities were as a group 
probably the most "conservation minded" 
among technical service representatives. 
Another necessary phase of their duty was 
to decide whether the condition of equip- 
ment turned in was the result of normal 
wear, negligence , or more culpable action. 
The repair shop systems were the logical 

means whereby the technical services 
could exert a real and systematic control 
over the utilization and disposal of prop- 

Instead of making use of repair shops, 
which would have strengthened the re- 
sponsibilities of the chiefs of the technical 
services, Headquarters, SOS, proposed to 
expedite the processing and disposal of 
equipment by establishing in the service 
commands special salvage and reclama- 
tion centers located "along the line of flow 
of property requiring repair" and of sal- 
vage material. 52 This proposal was ap- 
parently influenced by the movement then 
under way at Headquarters, SOS, to con- 
centrate the administration of all field ac- 
tivities on a functional basis under the 
service commands. 

The OQMG objected to the establish- 
ment of such centers because it believed 
that there was no such thing in the various 
service commands as a general line of flow 
of property requiring repair or of salvage 
material. Furthermore, it felt that the plan 
would result in a great deal of unecessary 
transportation and rehandling of material. 
These considerations dictated against the 
plan's adoption, but one of its features was 
utilized. The original plan had suggested 
that the proposed centers process both sal- 
vage generated domestically and that re- 
ceived from overseas bases and theaters. 
With the first major expansion of combat 
operations, the necessity of planning for 
the latter became critical. Salvage centers, 
located near ports and receiving for segre- 
gation all salvage material returned from 
overseas, were established and became 

51 See Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 3, remarks 
of Col Falkenau. 

52 Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for Chief, Distr 
Div, SOS, 14 Dec 42, sub: Disp of Unserviceable Prop 
and Salv Opns, and appended plan submitted by SOS 
at 10 December conference. 



permanent features of wartime salvage 

In the early spring of 1 943 procedures 
for declaring equipment unserviceable 
were simplified by revoking most of the 
authority of inspectors and surveying offi- 
cers." Instead, responsibility was placed 
on the using unit. The inventory and in- 
spection report was eliminated entirely, 
except for use in the disposition of govern- 
ment-owned animals. A report of survey 
was substituted as the one means of clear- 
ing unserviceable items from the property 
accounts of the accountable officers, but 
many troublesome procedural provisions 
were eliminated since alternatives for dis- 
position that might be recommended by 
the surveying officers were now reduced 
from eight to four. 31 

The War Department further directed: 
It will be axiomatic that disposition of un- 
serviceable property, that is, whether it shall 
be repaired and continued in service, or 
turned over to a salvage officer after the 
spare parts and other components have been 
removed, will be determined by repair shops of 
various echelons operating under technical instruc- 
tions furnished by the chief of service to which the 
property pertains ™ 

In furtherance of this principle standard 
arrangements were established for the 
shipment of equipment to repair shops for 
inspection and processing, or for the on- 
site inspection of equipment by shop offi- 
cers in appropriate cases. Thus the repair 
shops became actual administrators, 
rather than mere adjuncts, of the inspec- 
tion and disposition process. 

But if the principle of technical control 
through repair echelons was now clearly 
established , neither the simplification of 
this control nor the clarification of respon- 
sibilities for supply discipline and property 
accountability was yet fully accomplished. 
The War Department directive of March 

1943 did include a provision that defi- 
nitely forbade the mutilation or destruc- 
tion of property, except in those instances 
where it was patently necessary and ap- 
propriate as, for example, the destruction 
of unsafe subsistence. and medical stores or 
the mutilation of "distinctive" articles of 
the uniform. Considerable controversy 
had arisen over the tendency of certain in- 
spectors arbitrarily to order the destruc- 
tion of "worthless" articles out of igno- 
rance of the market potentialities of the 
items or their further use within the Army, 
Actually official policy had provided that 
inspectors, where Feasible, mark items 
11 IC" (inspected and condemned) rather 
than order mutilation or destruction. At- 
tention had repeatedly been given to 
formulating instructions for the marking 
of goods. Inspectors, however, had justi- 
fied their course of action on the ground 
that it prevented abuse and protected the 
government against fraud, despite the fact 
that it interfered with economical repair 
and salvaging. Many months had been re- 
quired even to secure agreement on the 
necessity of forbidding the practice of 
mutilation, let alone actually stopping it. 
The elimination of all unnecessary mark- 
ing and mutilation had been first agreed 
upon in July 1942 in a conference between 
The Quartermaster General and The In- 
spector General. The OQMG Salvage 
Branch had thereupon issued instructions 
to the field, but the practice had con- 
tinued. 5 " It was late in 1942 before mutUa- 

~ 7T WDC~ir75. Lb Mar 43. 
■' (H Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for Chief of 
Distr DW, SOS, 14 Dec 42, sub: Disp of Unserviceable 
Prop and Salv Opns. (2) Memo, CdI Falkrnau, 
OQMG, lor Col Hamilton, IB Deer 42, sub: Disp of 

* (I) OQMG Daily Activity Rpt. 20 Jul 42. (2) Ltr, 
Maj John P. Ijoomis, OQMG, to CG 8th SvC, 13 Au? 
i&ySOh; Invitation for Bids. 



tion was prohibited, and March 1943 
before instructions were formally pub- 
lished. 37 

Under the procedure promulgated in 
March 1943, full control and streamlining 
of the system for disposition of property 
were retarded by the War Department's 
effort to continue the use of the survey in 
a shortened form as the universal instru- 
ment for disposition of equipment, and to 
provide a medium of protection against 
improper disposal practices. Although ar- 
ticles rendered unserviceable by normal 
use or deterioration in service were turned 
in to the supply officer by means of a 
simple certificate executed by the unit 
commander or responsible officer, the pro- 
cedure from that point on remained cum- 
bersome. Property could also be submitted 
to repair echelons and returned after proc- 
essing without undue red tape or delay, 
but the authority that at any stage con- 
demned articles was required in all cases 
to execute a report of survey. A sem- 
blance of the former control procedure 
was preserved in the requirement that 
each survey be submitted to a "disinter- 
ested" officer, who would examine the ar- 
ticles and ascertain that they had not been 
improperly disposed of as a result of pres- 
sure from troop units or because of other 

Experience soon demonstrated that in 
most localities the volume of property ac- 
cumulating to be processed was so great 
that not even this bottleneck could be 
tolerated. As a result, the use of the survey 
was restricted, and formal investigations 
were reserved for occasions when any of 
the receiving or processing agencies might 
have cause to suspect irregularity. >s In all 
routine cases thereafter, either a brief 
"turn-in slip" or an exchange document," 9 
on which the responsible officer had exe- 

cuted his accustomed certificate of "fair 
wear and tear," served as the formal in- 
strument both for submission of property 
by troop echelons and final disposal of 
items by salvaging. With one compara- 
tively minor exception,' 1 " responsibility for 
property was thus finally placed squarely 
upon using and processing echelons, with 
decisions as to disposition being made by 
agencies presumably best qualified to do 
so. Although a number of refinements 
were later introduced, this general restric- 
tion on the use of surveys virtually com- 
pleted the separation of accountability 
and control of the disposition of property. 

Transfer of Responsibility to the 
Army Service Forces 

Although no change was made in the 
assignment of responsibility for various 
conservation functions in March 1943, 
simplification of procedures helped to pre- 
pare the way for a final settlement of 
responsibility for salvage as a matter of 
staff supervision. Many special factors, 
however, affected the actual decision that 
was made. 

Under broad, general policies estab- 
lished by the Distribution Division, ASF, 

(1) WD Cir 393, Sec. I, 4 Dec 42, sub: Mutilation 
and Marking of Salvageable Materials. (2) WD Cir 
75, 16 Mar 43. This circular rescinded AR 20-35, 
which had previously provided inspectors with direc- 
tions on mutilation. 

WD Cir 7, 5 Jan 44, sub: Repl for and Disp of 
Unserviceable Prop. This circular served throughout 
the remainder of the war as the basic regulation for 
the disposition of property. 

These forms were used for clothing and equipage. 
The procedure %vas later changed. 

In those instances where the salvage officer was 
also an accountable officer, the station commander 
was required to appoint a disinterested officer to re- 
ceive property and determine by physical check that 
the number and description, of articles to be salvaged 
were as listed. 



The Quartermaster General was "charged 
with the determination of policies, plans, 
and procedures to be executed by the serv- 
ice commands with reference to the dis- 
position or sale of scrap and waste ma- 
terials.'" 11 Although his responsibility for 
disposing of general salvage was Army- 
wide, individual chiefs of the technical 
services were charged with the disposal of 
industrial or "current production" scrap 
at arsenals and manufacturing establish- 
ments under their jurisdiction. 

On several occasions conflicts had arisen 
out of this division of operating responsi- 
bilities. In October 1942, the Chief of 
Ordnance had recommended that consid- 
eration be given to changing current in- 
structions governing the disposal of scrap 
materials in Ordnance establishments in 
order to eliminate the dual responsibility 
of the Chief of Ordnance and The Quar- 
termaster General for handling scrap ma- 
terials. <i2 Headquarters, SOS, rejected this 
proposal on the strong objection of The 
Quartermaster General, who emphasized 
that the return of critical materials to war 
production channels could best be accom- 
plished by a unified program for all Army 
installations developed by one responsible 
office. He insisted, moreover, that such 
confusion as might have existed was due 
primarily to the failure of the Ordnance 
Department to adhere to the regulations. 
Directives of that agency designated as in- 
dustrial scrap many items, such as packag- 
ing materials, rags, paper, and rubber, 
that should have been handled under 
procedures established for dormant 
scrap. 11:1 

Conflict had also developed over the 
conduct of salvage activities at ports. The 
Chief of Transportation had insisted upon 
keeping the ports of embarkation entirely 
independent of corps areas and any local 

activities in relation to supply. On the 
other hand, the OQMG Salvage Branch 
had maintained that in matters relating to 
salvage the same policy should apply to 
ports of embarkation as applied to other 
exempted stations within the corps areas, 
namely, "that the supervision of salvage 
matters and the issuance of directives 
should be handled through the Corps Area 
Quartermaster."" 4 Insofar as the disposal 
of scrap and reparable property returned 
from overseas was involved, many special 
administrative problems arose. In gen- 
eral, service commanders and port com- 
manders determined detailed operating 
procedures in conjunction with both the 
OQMG and Headquarters, SOS. 65 

When in November 1942 the Chief of 
Staff, SOS, had first suggested a transfer 
of staff responsibilities for salvage, the chief 
of the OQMG Salvage Branch had pro- 
posed consolidating responsibility for 
supervising the disposal of all types of 
scrap in the QMC under a single set of 
regulations.' 18 He had pointed out that the 
responsibility for the supervision of indus- 
trial scrap had originally been transferred 
from The Quartermaster General to other 
supply services in order to facilitate so- 
called toll contracts.'" Since WPB regula- 

WDCir 75, 16 Mar 43. 

B - Memo, Col John S. Raaen, Ord Dept, for CG 
SOS, 22 Oct 42, sub: Sales of Scrap and Salv. 

fi l (1) 2d Ind, Col Hamilton, OQMG, to Distr Div, 
SOS, 31 Oct 42. on memo cited above, n. 62. (2) 3d 
Ind, ACofS for Optis, SOS, to CofOrd, 14 Nov 42, 
on same memo. 

R > Memo, Col Falkenau for Col Hamilton, OQMG, 
4 Jul 42, sub: Relation of POEs to CA QMs Re Salv. 

6r > AGO Memo S30-1-43, 2 Jan 43, sub: Policy for 
Handling Oversea Salv. 

6 " (1) Memo, Gen Styer for ACofS for Opns, SOS, 
21 Nov 42, sub: Salv Activities. (2) Chief of Salv Br 
to Dir of Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 1 Dec 42, sub: 
Analysis of 21 Nov Memo. 

87 Under toll contracts, current production scrap 
was sold directly to contractors furnishing fabricated 
items or materials to the Army. 



tions had eliminated such contracts, it was 
unnecessary to continue this confusing 
division of responsibility. 

This proposal was officially advanced 
by The Quartermaster General six months 
later, but at that time Headquarters, ASF, 
saw no reason to disturb the existing ar- 
rangements on salvage responsibilities 
since studies concerning the entire salvage 
system were in progress. 68 These studies 
covered not only the disposal of scrap and 
surplus property, but also the redistribu- 
tion and utilization of materials and 
equipment. In order to tighten controls in 
these fields, ASF had vested authority for 
staff supervision of the disposition of scrap 
and surplus property in a new Redistribu- 
tion Branch, organized in the Production 
Division of the Office of the Director of 
Materiel in May 1943. The Director of 
Operations, ASF, as before, continued to 
exercise staff supervision over reclamation 
and maintenance activities. eH 

These developments culminated in a 
final proposal to eliminate overlapping 
and duplication of responsibility and to 
provide for more effective staff supervision 
of salvage activities by transferring all such 
responsibility from The Quartermaster 
General to the Production Division, ASF. 
Despite the objections of General Greg- 
ory, 70 who expressed concern both over the 
possible loss of co-ordination between 
Quartermaster reclamation and salvage 
activities and over the establishment of a 
precedent for assumption of operating 
supervision by agencies on the headquar- 
ters level, this proposal was put into effect 
in August. 71 

The decision of Headquarters, ASF, was 
based on the need to consolidate respon- 
sibility for supervision in one agency and 
on the view that the salvage function was 
one properly charged to the service com- 

mands under direct, but minimum, super- 
vision by the ASF Salvage and Redistribu- 
tion Branch. 72 Back of it, too, was the 
record of difficulties encountered in distin- 
guishing between staff and operating 
responsibilities for salvage and the emer- 
gence of new problems that pressed for 
settlement. Thus, when General Gregory 
had suggested clarification of service com- 
mand responsibilities in regard to the flow 
of salvage returned from overseas, Head- 
quarters, ASF, had undertaken the devel- 
opment of administrative procedures for 
that purpose on the ground that other 
considerations in addition to those of tech- 
nical control were involved and that the 
operations of many agencies, including the 
ports of embarkation and theater organ- 
izations, were affected. The Quartermas- 
ter General, on the other hand, had 
steadily maintained that the matter was 
entirely one of operations rather than gen- 
eral policy. 

The desire of Headquarters, ASF, to re- 
organize the arrangements for supervising 
salvage activities seems to have been stim- 
ulated also by the reports critical of Quar- 
termaster administration submitted by 
ASF representatives who had made in- 
spection trips through the service com- 

68 (1) Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for Chief of 
Redistr Br, Production Div, ASF, 26 Jun 43, sub: 
Consolidation of Authority for Salv Activities. (2) 
Memo, Chief of Redistr Br, ASF, for TQMG, 30 
Jun 43, same sub. 

su ASF Cir 35, 28 May 43, sub: Staff Supervision 
of Salv and Surplus Prop. 

"Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 28 Jul 43, sub: 
Transfer of Staff Supervision of Salv Activities. 

71 (1) ASF Cir 58, 7 Aug 43, sub: Transfer of Staff 
Supervision of Salv Activities. (2) This action, of 
course, necessitated the formulation of a new regula- 
tion, AR 700-25, which was published on 26 April 

72 1st Ind, Hq ASF to TQMG, 31 Jul 43, on 
Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 28 Jul 43, sub: Trans- 
fer of Staff Supervision of Salv Activities. 



mands during the spring and summer of 
1943. Although these inspections were 
often conducted hurriedly and without 
adequate attention to the causes of condi- 
tions observed, they invariably resulted in 
vigorous indictment of the activities sur- 
veyed. 73 Many of these criticisms reflected 
conditions that had been aggravated by 
inadequate supervision of local activities. 
While the criticisms did not take into ac- 
count either the inability of The Quarter- 
master General to secure the authorization 
of necessary supervisory personnel for the 
service commands or the limitations 
placed upon direct Quartermaster super- 
vision of activities, this omission served 
merely to emphasize the dilemma that had 
confronted The Quartermaster General in 
supervising an activity over which he had 
no adequate means of control but for 
which, nevertheless, he had full responsi- 
bility. Whether or not the basic difficulties 
were resolvable under Quartermaster aus- 
pices, it was clear that these, and especially 
the duplications and conflicts that had 
tended to prevent a solution of any sort, 
could no longer be tolerated. From this 
standpoint at least, the decision to simplify 
organization by consolidating staff respon- 
sibilities came as a long overdue measure 
of improvement. 

When General Gregory expressed ap- 
prehension that the transfer of operating 
responsibilities for salvage, which were so 
closely related to those of reclamation, 
would "retard the supply objectives within 
the Army, and more especially within the 
Army Service Forces," he was anticipating 
problems that might arise. 74 Thus, the 
study and improvement of the interrelated 
activities of conservation and salvage held 
special interest for the QMC. Studies 
made by the Quartermaster Board of ar- 
ticles received in salvage furnished increas- 

ingly valuable clues to conditions in main- 
tenance and supply, along with the utility 
of equipment designs, and served as a basis 
for corrective action by various agencies. 75 
In addition, the analysis of data on quan- 
tities and potentialities of salvage was to 
assume increasing importance in supply 
computation. For the Corps, moreover, 
there was to develop a special need for 
close contact with the administration of 
salvage activities because of Quartermas- 
ter responsibility for civilian supply pro- 
curements in support of theater operations. 
A large part of these procurements were 
estimated and secured from salvage stocks 
of clothing and other articles. The QMC 
still had vital interests in salvage, though 
as a service it had perhaps no particular 
claim to responsibility for the activity 
other than through the variety of its com- 
modity interests and the special experience 
of its organization. 

Conservation Programs and Command 

A by-product of the clarification and 
revision of basic procedures accomplished 
during 1943 and 1944 was the clear recog- 
nition of, and the stimulus given to, the 
vital program for indoctrination of troops 
and the implementation of the responsibil- 
ities of unit commanders. Early in the war 
the OQMG had given consideration to the 
development of a broad program of indoc- 
trination. The Quartermaster General had 

73 (1) See for example, Memo, ACofS for Opns, 
ASF, for TQMG, 15 Apr 43, sub: Insp Rpt of Salv 
and Reclm Activities in Third SvC. (2) [1st Ind], Col 
Rudolf W. Rieflcohl, Third SvC, to TQMG, 14 
May 43. 

74 Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 28 Jul 43, sub: 
Transfer of Staff Supervision of Salv Activities. 

75 Rpt, Dir of QM Bd to TQMG, Rpt of the 
Quartermaster Board, Camp Lee, Va., 1 Feb 42-30 
Jun 44, pp. 110-18. 



called attention to the difficulty that an 
unfavorable Army record in the conserva- 
tion of essential items, such as food, cloth- 
ing, and gasoline, might create in securing 
the co-operation of the civilian population 
in the prosecution of the war. 7fl 

He had suggested initiation throughout 
the Army of a "public relations" campaign 
to impress upon every individual the need 
for conservation. To achieve this end, 
slogans, publicity in camp newspapers, 
and competitive awards granted to organ- 
izations with good conservation records 
might be used. He had further proposed 
the establishment of a single agency with 
comprehensive responsibility for carrying 
out this program. Although a broad pro- 
gram did not materialize, the OQMG 
Salvage Branch had continued to urge the 
use of educational programs and publicity 
through established channels as the most 
effective means of promoting conservation 
among the troops. 77 At the same time, it 
had recognized the limitations of direct 
enforcement methods. 

Early in the war unit commanders were 
generally dilatory in pursuing their re- 
sponsibilities for promoting conservation 
activities among their troops and for co- 
operating with the supply agencies. At the 
same time, local salvage activities were 
especially hampered by unclarified ad- 
ministrative responsibilities, as well as by 
a lack of experience and a shortage of 
manpower. Neither the quality nor the ef- 
ficiency of service in local repair shops had 
improved sufficiently to bring about a 
maximum recovery of articles or the full 
co-operation of unit commanders in the 
reuse of these items and the enforcement 
of conservation policies. For the OQMG, 
the most complex and difficult problems 
were encountered in the issue and utiliza- 
tion of items of clothing and equipage, the 

announced policies for which called for 
priority to be accorded to the consumption 
of used, renovated, and limited-standard 
articles. 7 * 4 

Soon after Pearl Harbor basic proce- 
dures were modified to the extent that 
troop commanders were relieved of the 
duty of preparing surveys in the disposi- 
tion of equipment. Each station com- 
mander was instructed to appoint one or 
more local boards of property adjustment, 
composed of officers of suitable experience 
from the station complement. 79 They were 
authorized to act as surveying officers and 
inspectors for all property submitted by 
units, to prepare papers at the request of 
units, and to take final action for the sta- 
tion commander on all papers. At the 
same time, the War Department directed 
that the amount of evidence supporting 
surveys, and all other red tape incident to 
this procedure, be reduced to the mini- 
mum absolutely necessary to establish facts 
in each case. 

These modifications led to a simplifica- 
tion that was much needed, but many 
criticized them because they fostered a ne- 
glect of the investigative function of the 
surveying officer, and, by relieving unit 
commanders of the duty of preparing sur- 
veys, resulted in deterioration of supply 
discipline among troops. Relieving the 
troop commanders of a feeling of property 

'•' Memo, 1st Lt John S. Hayes, OQMG, for WD 
Dir of Bureau of Public Relations, 14 Feb 42, sub: 
Proposed Campaign for Waste Prevention. 

77 (1) Ltr, Chief of Salv and Surplus Prop Br, 
OQMG, to Chief of Public Relations Bureau, 13 Apr 
42, sub: Tng Films, Posters, Etc.. for Salv Indoctrina- 
tion. (2) Charles R. Van Etten, Salv Specialist, to 
Chief of Salv and Surplus Prop Br, OQMG, 21 Feb 
42, same sub. 
7S See below 

Ch. II. 

7!l (1) WD Cir 105, 10 Apr 42, sub: Simplified Ac- 
counting Procedure for Orgn Prop. (2) WD Cir 405, 
15 Dec 42, same sub. (3)' WD C'w 1 70, 24 Jul 43, 
same sub. 



responsibility was deemed a primary cause 
of excess consumption and loss of supplies 
by troops in training. 80 

As the difficulties in supply-command 
administration of conservation were stud- 
ied, increasing emphasis was placed upon 
the development of an adequate sense of 
property responsibility or "supply con- 
sciousness" among troops. No real solution 
to the problem of relations between troop 
commanders and supply agencies could be 
found as long as command indoctrination 
remained inadequate. To foster supply 
consciousness among the troops, the ASF 
initiated an Army Conservation Program 
late in 1943 following the redefinition and 
reorganization of salvage and conservation 

It employed the same techniques as the 
earlier Quartermaster conservation pro- 
gram. The ASF directed the technical 
services to provide field commanders with 
various materials or projects to be used for 
educating and indoctrinating the troops in 
the need for and the objectives of conser- 
vation. It further directed them to engage 
in extensive publicity efforts in installa- 
tions directly under their jurisdiction. 
While the objectives were phrased mainly 
in terms of action within troop organiza- 
tions, the program also called for maxi- 
mum participation by the technical serv- 
ices and improvement of their functions in 
assisting troops in the conservation of 

A proposal in the summer of 1944 to re- 
turn to troop commanders the processing 
of survey reports in order to emphasize 
supply discipline was rejected as unsound 
and inconsistent with the purpose under- 
lying the formation of the ASF — that of 
providing service to free the other two 
commands from as much of the adminis- 
trative and supply burden as possible. 14 - 

Nevertheless, the full responsibility of 
commanders for control of their units did 
receive more and more recognition. As a 
result, advocates of the development of 
command consciousness and supply dis- 
cipline through the use of surveys even- 
tually won their point. Supply officers and 
classification officers receiving unservice- 
able property from troop units were in- 
structed to "accept as correct" the basis 
of turn-in on all occasions, regardless of 
the circumstances or the condition of 
property in question. Thenceforth the 
proper procedure, in cases where certifica- 
tion of "fair wear and tear" was suspect or 
when issue of new articles was not con- 
sidered to be justified, was for the local 
quartermaster, through the station com- 
mander, to bring pertinent facts to the 
attention of the organization commander, 
who had full responsibility for initialing 
surveys or other necessary measures. 81 

Some divisions of the OQMG were 
critical of this major change in policy, 
fearing that it would "provide a means for 
promiscuous turning in of property by 
units" in the zone of interior in the same 
manner that supplies were turned in by 
alerted organizations. K4 The OQMG con- 
curred in the change nonetheless, for it be- 
lieved that this policy, based on the integ- 

N " Min of Conf of CGs of SvCs, Ft. Leonard Wood, 
Mo., 27-29 Jul 44, pp. FI3-14. 

sl (l) Memo, Deputy Dir of Opns, ASF, for 
TQMG. 18 Aug 43. sub: SOP for Promulgation of 
Army Conscrv Indoctrination Program. (2) The 
program was not officially initialed until October. 
WD Cir 240, Sec. V, 4 Oct 43. sub: Army Conserv 

Min of Conf of CGs of SvCs, Ft. Leonard Wood, 
Mo., 27-29 Jul 44. F13-14. 

TM 38-403. 1 Aug 44, sub: Station Sup Pro- 

M (1) Col Hamilton to C&E Br, S&D Div, OQMG, 
21 Aug 44, sub: Proposed Revision of AR 615.40. (2) 
Chief of Stock Control Br, S&D Div, to DQMG for 
Sup Ping and Opns, 26 Aug 44, same sub. 



rity and honesty of all officers of the Army, 
was a rational approach to the problem of 
accountability and responsibility. 85 The 
importance of this policy trend on com- 
mand responsibility is emphasized by the 
fact that the new procedure was adopted 
in conjunction with a general review of 
procedures for handling separations of 
personnel from the Army and in anticipa- 
tion of the problems incident to processing 
property turn-ins and personnel separa- 
tions during demobilization. 86 

Quartermaster Salvage Program 

By the time Headquarters, ASF, as- 
sumed the supervision of general Army 
salvage in the summer of 1943, the QMC, 
which had administered a salvage pro- 
gram since World War I, had developed a 
system that compared favorably with simi- 
lar civilian efforts in preserving and sal- 
vaging materials for essential uses. As 
early as July 1941, The Quartermaster 
General inaugurated a broad program of 
conservation and reclamation of vitally 
needed materials. Communications to the 
field issued by the Salvage, Reclamation, 
and Surplus Property Branch of the 
OQMG or by higher authority at its in- 
stigation emphasized the contribution that 
the Army could make to its own supply ef- 
forts by the reuse of materials, and the 
savings that would result from salvaging 
materials for industrial use. Regular col- 
lection of certain materials, ordinarily dis- 
carded in peacetime, was initiated. These 
included waste paper, glass, greases, con- 
tainers, burlap, and other materials that 
early showed signs of becoming critical. 
The problem of salvaging tin cans for de- 
tinning purposes was also studied in order 
to overcome certain obstacles, such as un- 
favorable freight rates. 87 When the Japa- 

nese struck in December 1941, the salvage 
of most basic materials was well under 

In addition to collection of scrap accu- 
mulating from the training and mainte- 
nance of troops and from operations at the 
various manufacturing establishments, a 
clean-up campaign was undertaken. All 
metal items that were no longer of use on 
posts were turned in to salvage and sent 
through channels of industry to mills for 
remelting and refabrication. Such accu- 
mulations of "junk" on Army, reservations 
had been augmented by the prewar lack 
of markets for scrap materials and the ban 
placed upon its sale to avoid glutting 
available markets. 88 These accumulations 
had also grown larger through the proc- 
essing of nonstandard, used, and other- 
wise deteriorated stocks available from 
war reserves or received from military and 
government agencies, such as the National 
Guard, the Citizens' Military Training 
Camps (CMTC), and the Civilian Con- 
servation Corps (CCC), whose activities 
were suspended or discontinued because of 
the war. The largest transfers of material 
were made by the CCC. As a result of the 

[1st Ind], Brig Gen Herman Feldman, DQMG 
for Sup Ping and Opns, to CG ASF, 29 Aug 44. See 
also attached memo for record. 

[3d Ind], Dir of Control Div, ASF, to TQMG, 
15 Jul 44, sub: Changes to AR 35-6560 and AR 
615-40. (2) [5th Ind], Dir of Control Div, ASF, to 
TQMG, 10 Aug 44, same sub. (3) [7th Ind], Dir of 
Control Div, ASF, to TQMG, 28 Aug 44, same sub. 

87 (1) OQMG Cir Ltr 204, 13 Aug 41, sub: Con- 
serv of Metal Parts of Personal Equip. (2) OQMG 
Cir Ltr 253, 29 Sep 41, sub: Conserv of Packing Ma- 
terials. (3) Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, to QM Third 
CA, 21 Jul 41, sub: Sale of Tin Cans. (4) Ltr, 
Falkenau to Dir of Sv Instls Div, OQMG, 3 Aug 42, 
sub: Annual Rpt. 

ss (l) Memo, TQMG for ASW, 12 Jan 38, sub: 
Sale of Scrap Iron and Steel. (2) Memo, ASW for 
TQMG et al., 8 Mar 38, no sub. (3) Memo, ASW r 
for TQMG, 2 Nov 40, sub: Recision of Memo of 8 
Mar 38. 



SALVAGE TIN DUMP, Camp Davis, N. C. 

clean-up campaign, old guns, war relics of 
all types, old rails, and many other items 
found their way from Army posts to the 
scrap heap for conversion into modern 
weapons of war. 

Shortly after Pearl Harbor the first of 
several comprehensive directives was 
issued, calling attention to the tremendous 
production burden being placed upon the 
country's industries and the resultant 
shortage of scrap metal and other mate- 
rial. 89 Post commanders were ordered to 
take immediate steps to survey their in- 
stallations for material arid to speed the 
processing and sale of material to civilian 
scrap dealers. Particular reference was 
made to the salvaging of scrap metals and 

scrap rubber, which was then and con- 
tinued for some time to be of special 
interest to the public. 

While carrying out its own collection 
program for scrap metals, the Army also 
co-operated in the civilian scrap drive. 
Before Pearl Harbor there had been no 
pressure for a national campaign to collect 
salvage materials. Once it was revealed 
that a real scrap famine threatened unless 
extraordinary measures were taken, such a 
campaign was instituted by the WPB 
early in January 1942. Several months 
were required for the program to get into 

s9 Ltr, TAG to all WD Agencies and Army Com - 
mands, 7 Jan 42. sub: Handling of Salv Activities, 
AG 400.74 Ft. Knox (12-10-41) MO-D-M. 



full swing and for special arrangements to 
be concluded for Army installations to 
handle civilian scrap. In many remote 
areas where transportation was not avail- 
able and there were no local scrap dealers, 
Army facilities provided the only means 
by which accumulations of civilian scrap 
could be returned to industry. As a gen- 
eral rule, delivery of civilian scrap to mili- 
tary installations from concentration points 
was undertaken by the Army only in those 
cases where local committees were unable 
to consummate sales to dealers or to make 
delivery to the nearest military establish- 
ment. 90 A procedure was developed where- 
by Army officers inspected reported accu- 
mulations that could not be disposed of 
through regular channels to insure that 
their movement to an Army installation 
was necessary or advantageous. Repre- 
sentatives of the OQMG Salvage Branch 
worked closely with WPB officials, who 
eventually adopted and applied to their 
civilian drive several features of the Army 
salvage system, particularly those in refer- 
ence to the segregation and preparation of 
materials. s " 

The effect of the national program was 
to intensify the Army's own house-clean- 
ing drive at all posts and abandoned sta- 
tions. Not only had very few stations been 
put in order, but the constant accumula- 
tion of current scrap threatened to swamp 
local salvage facilities unless this and the 
backlog were cleaned up rapidly. Late in 
the summer of 1942, the Secretary of War 
ordered that "immediate and positive 
action be taken by all concerned to inten- 
sify the salvage and conservation pro- 
gram." This order resulted in the segre- 
gation of an enormous amount of scrap, 
surplus, and salvage materials at posts, 
camps, and stations. Inspectors general 
were instructed to pay particular attention 

to getting these materials into industrial 
channels quickly and efficiently. !li 

Facilities and Labor 

The increased activity caused by the 
clean-up campaign and co-operation with 
civilian programs aggravated difficulties 
experienced in the acquisition of suitable 
storage facilities, equipment, and labor for 
salvage operations. While open storage 
space was satisfactory for many materials, 
regular warehouse space was needed for 
those which deteriorated if exposed to the 
weather. The segregation and proper stor- 
age of salvage involved problems similar 
to those in the warehousing of regular 
merchandise. Adequate space for salvage 
had to be provided at camps, unsatisfac- 
tory storage conditions had to be cor- 
rected, and information had to be fur- 
nished on the best methods of warehousing 
salvage materials, 94 Furthermore, a cer- 
tain amount of equipment for handling 
salvage was needed at most Army installa- 
tions. The Salvage Branch, OQMG, au- 
thorized the supply of all baling and other 

"" For policy see (1) AGO Memo S30-4-42, 18 Sep 
42, sub: Co-operation with Civilian Scrap Collecting 
Agencies. (2) AGO Memo S30- 14-43, 6 Apr 43, sub: 
Policy Relating to Domestic Salv. 

(1) Charles Van Etten to Col Falkenau, OQMG, 
31 Aug 42, sub: Household Salvaging of Critical Ma- 
terials." (2) Ltr, Van Etten to Raleigh K. White, Chief 
of General Saiv Sec, WPB, 31 Oct 42, no sub. 

! ' 2 (1) AGO Memo W30-2-42, 31 Aug 42, sub: In- 
tensification of Conserv and Salv Program. (2)'Min 
of Salv and Reclm Conf, pp. 6-7. 

in (1) AGO Memo W20-1-42, 4 Sep 42, sub: Insp 
and Rpt of Salv. (2) See Sgt Herbert E. French, 
"Salvage Collection at an Army Training Center," 
QMR, XXII (November-December 1942), 42-43, 

!,+ (1) TQMG to Chief of Constr Div, OQMG, 30 
Jun 41, no sub. (2) Col Falkenau to Lt Col Kenney 
J. Brunsvold, OQMG, 28 Jul 42, sub: Draft of Salv 



special equipment, such as bulldozers, 
power shears, platform scales, crane mag- 
nets, and conveyors, only when the volume 
of materials handled justified the outlay 
and service could not be secured other- 
wise. It was the fixed policy of the branch 
to require contractors, where feasible, to 
install their own handling equipment or to 
move the material to their yards for prepa- 

By keeping preparation of materials at 
Army installations to the minimum con- 
sistent with the realization of adequate re- 
turns from sales and the efficient, indus- 
trial utilization of materials, the Salvage 
Branch was able to minimize the labor 
problem in salvage operations. As the 
campaign to clean up Army reservations 
w r as intensified, special measures were 
needed to insure a supply of labor to in- 
stallations, but a proposal to draw up 
Tables of Organization for salvage com- 
panies to be used at posts, camps, and sta- 
tions to gather, collect, and dispose of 
waste materials was rejected upon the in- 
sistence of the Salvage Branch. According 
to the branch their use "would offer no 
substantial advantage over the existing 
system of handling salvage at posts largely 
with civilian employees" and would "sac- 
rifice the great flexibility and adaptability 
of personnel to local requirements af- 
forded by the present system." 9,i As short- 
ages of civilian labor became acute, how- 
ever, many installations had to assign en- 
listed men attached to the overhead 
organizations at posts, camps, and stations 
to salvage duties, and in a few instances 
the use of special organizations was ap- 
proved. In time, more and more prisoner- 
of-war labor was used for sorting large ac- 
cumulations of unserviceable clothing, 
shoes, and other Quartermaster equip- 
ment before its reclamation or disposal. 

Reclamation and Utilization 

One of the functions of salvage opera- 
tions was to insure the maximum utiliza- 
tion within the Army not only of equip- 
ment no longer serviceable in its designed 
form, although valuable for other pur- 
poses, but also of scrap and waste mate- 
rials useful in its machine shops and other 
installations. No brief discussion can give 
an adequate or comprehensive description 
of the Army's conversion of salvaged items 
to substitute uses and within-service utili- 
zation of scrap and waste products. 

Regulations required the salvage officer 
to examine all material received to deter- 
mine whether it could be repaired, re- 
claimed, and returned to stock, or could be 
utilized in some other form or for some 
other purpose by the QMC or other sup- 
ply services. Wiping rags, for example, 
were in constant demand at machine 
shops and garages. Torn flour sacks could 
be used in kitchens and scrap lumber in 
packing, crating, and for dunnage. Before 
disposing of accumulations of such mate- 
rials, the salvage officer was further re- 
quired to notify local representatives of 
other supply services in order to afford 
them an opportunity to examine and 
make application for the transfer of any 
materials they could utilize.' 17 Like other 
supply services, the QMC reprocessed a 
part of its industrial scrap salvaged at 
posts, camps, and stations in its own 
manufacturing installations, as, for exam- 
ple, at the Jeffersonville Depot where 

!,r ' See Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, to Seventh GA, 
27 Oct 41, no sub. 

TQMG to Brig Gen Clifford L. Corbin, 
OQMG, 25 Nov 41, no'sub. (2) Memo, TQMG for 
TAG. 10 Dec 41. sub: Salv. 

117 AR 30-2145, par. 16, 2 Sep 42, sub: QMC— 
Unserviceable Prop Including Waste Materials. 



scrap metals were used for the production 
of hardware and similar items. 

The OQMG Salvage Branch encour- 
aged local salvage and shop officers to use 
ingenuity in devising methods of utilizing 
materials. Many specific proposals were 
circularized, such as the suggestions that 
5-gallon oil cans and other metal con- 
tainers turned in to salvage be converted 
into metal pails for fire protection and 
other purposes, and that unserviceable 
blankets, pads, and mattresses be used on 
rifle ranges. 98 In some cases field installa- 
tions developed methods of converting 
materials that promised to become perma- 
nent, profitable enterprises. For example, 
the Jeffersonville Depot, which had been 
accumulating great quantities of corru- 
gated board from old cartons in the course 
of repacking operations, developed a meth- 
od for shredding it. The resultant product, 
it was claimed, possessed considerable 
superiority over excelsior, since it con- 
tained little moisture and was very 
resilient. 39 

Disposal of Salvage Other Than by Sale 

The salvage officer had other alterna- 
tives in disposing of articles besides that of 
sale to regular commercial and industrial 
agencies. The shipment to manufacturers 
of old articles to be exchanged for new 
ones of identical or like design, under the 
direction and supervision of the chief of 
service concerned, continued to be per- 
missible under certain conditions. 100 Ex- 
change had long been used, under specific 
authorization by Congress, not only to 
effect the familiar trade-in of motor ve- 
hicles, engines, parts, and similar items, 
but also from time to time to secure re- 
placement of typewriters and other office 
equipment, sewing machines and other 

machinery in factories, and fired cartridge 
and' shell cases for which manufacturers 
had an established practice permitting ex- 
change. In the QMC this practice was 
confined to the exchange of old typewriters 
for new, but this became inconsequential 
during the war because of the restrictions 
imposed upon their manufacture. 101 

Another alternative open to the salvage 
officer was that of donating property for 
use in vocational training. During its ex- 
istence, the National Youth Administra- 
tion (NYA) was the principal agency with 
which the OQMG collaborated in making 
its salvage available for this purpose. When 
the ASF assumed responsibility for the 
supervision of salvage, it continued the 
program of donating such property, with- 
out reimbursement except for the costs of 
packing, handling, and transportation, to 
schools for use in vocational training. The 
policy was further broadened to permit 
the . transfer of any type of salvage to a 
charitable or tax-supported institution 
upon the approval of the Commanding 
General, ASF. 102 

Disposal of Salvage by Sale 

In addition to the reclamation and 
utilization of equipment no longer service- 
able in its original form but valuable none- 
theless, the function of salvage involved 

98 Col Hamilton, Chief of Sv Instls Div, to GAS Div, 
OQMG, 4 Jul 42, sub: Ltr of Info. 

93 Rpt, Col Falkenau to TQMG, Mar 43, sub: Insp 
of Activities at JQMD. 

AR 30-2145, par. 17, 2 Sep 42, sub: QMC— 
Unserviceable Prop, Including Waste Materials. 

101 1st Ind, Col Francis H. Pope, OQMG, to 
OUSW, 9 Jul 41, on Memo, OUSW for TQMG, 1 
Jul 41, sub: Filing with GAO Contracts Involving 

10 - (1) Ltr, TAG to Chiefs of Sup Arms and Svs 
el al., 10 Nov 38. sub: Transfer of Supplies and 
Equip to NYA, AG 400.703 (1 1-9-38) (Misc) D-M. 
(2) PR 7, par. 743. 



two other phases. Strictly speaking, these 
comprised the disposal process and in- 
volved installing controls for segregating 
and making available for absorption by 
the war-starved civilian economy items 
that had utility for nonmilitary purposes. 
It also involved the disposal of scrap and 
waste materials for reprocessing by indus- 
trial agencies that had priority in essential 
uses. This disposal process required the 
application of many special techniques in 
the preparation and marketing of mate- 
rials. The industrial utility of scrap and 
waste and financial returns from their sale 
were in general determined by careful 
preparation and segregation of materials 
according to a list prepared by the 
OQMG, which conformed as nearly as 
possible to OPA classifications and those 
used in the waste material industry. 103 The 
Army usually accomplished only primary 
segregation, leaving the final preparation 
to qualified and equipped trade agencies. 
Marketing of both second-hand and waste 
materials was a complex undertaking for 
the salvage officer, requiring dealings with 
an industry characterized by the opera- 
tions of large numbers of dealers, including 
numerous small and marginal firms, many 
of whom engaged in competitive and sharp 
trade practices. 

Procedures for the sale of salvage mate- 
rials at Army field installations underwent 
some changes analogous to those that oc- 
curred in procurement operations. There 
was a gradual move toward negotiation of 
sales in lieu of the formal, sealed bid pro- 
cedure of peacetime. 104 This was necessi- 
tated not only by the need for dispatch in 
processing salvage but also by the advent 
of WPB allocations, the automatic sale of 
many materials at ceiling prices, and the 
special, fixed methods and machinery for 
disposing of certain critical materials. 

Negotiation contributed to the successful 
prosecution of the war because it permitted 
awards to be made to those producers of 
war materials who were in the greatest 
need of scrap, and also — in the interest of 
conserving transportation and gasoline, oil, 
and rubber — it allowed contracts covering 
entire lots of materials to be made to single 
bidders who were the highest bidders on a 
majority of items although low on a few of 
them. 105 

The general use of negotiation was 
authorized in the spring of 1942, based on 
the assumption that the First War Powers 
Act of 1941 gave the Secretary of War full 
power to authorize the use of negotiation 
in making war contracts. Later, it was de- 
cided that reference to this act was inap- 
propriate, since it affected only contracts 
for procurement of supplies and services 
whereas other statutes governed disposal 
of property. As a result of this misunder- 
standing with respect to the legal basis for 
sales of property, there was some disagree- 
ment as to whether various contract provi- 
sions required by public contract law were 
applicable to sales. The Salvage Branch, 
OQMG, believed that procurement regu- 
lations should not be applied to sales, 
although some provisions could be used, 
when appropriate, as a matter of policy. 
This view prevailed and a provision was 
inserted in the Quartermaster Supplement 
to the Procurement Regulations that these 
regulations would not apply to sales except 

103 OQMG Cir 1-8, 23 Feb 40, sub: Condemned 
Prop and Waste Material. This circular was revised 
on 10 December 1942. 

1<H (1) Ltr, Col Hamilton, OQMG, to Dir of Pro- 
curement and Distr Div, SOS, 17 Apr 42, sub: Au- 
thority for Negotiated Sale of Salv Prop. (2) PR 18-T, 
19 May 42. (3) AR 30-2145, par. 21,2 Sep 42, sub: 
QMC — Unserviceable Prop, Including Waste Mate- 

105 Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 7 1. 



where specific reference was made to sales 
contracts. 1 ™ 

The negotiation of sales required a 
fifteen-day advertising period to permit 
waste-material dealers who served posts in 
outlying areas to determine current market 
conditions and market values of materials 
before submitting bids. This policy, which 
was designed to meet the over-all require- 
ments, was modified by the increasingly 
extensive use of spot negotiation. By the 
fall of 1942 the demand of steel mills for 
scrap iron and steel had become so press- 
ing as to require the immediate movement 
of all large accumulations of such scrap. 
The use of spot negotiation was therefore 
first authorized in the sale of these mate- 
rials. 107 The OQMG delegated power to 
the service commands to authorize sales of 
scrap iron and steel by spot negotiation in 
specific instances at posts where substantial 
quantities had been collected. Such sales 
were consummated without the normal 
fifteen-day waiting period, either by nego- 
tiation with a responsible dealer at the 
ceiling price or after competitive bids had 
been obtained from not less than three 
scrap metal dealers on an informal, oral 
basis. Shortly after the OQMG took this 
action, it broadened the authority to in- 
clude all salvage material in view of the 
increasing demand for it." 18 This expanded 
authority was not intended as a blanket 
authorization but was only for use in spe- 
cific instances when conditions rendered 
such negotiation absolutely necessary. In 
all other cases, the Salvage Branch felt 
that the normal procedure of negotiation 
would furnish the most rapid return of 
materials to industry through established 
channels of trade. 

In disposing of waste materials, the 
Army entered into two kinds of contracts— 
an agreement covering the sale of definite 

quantities of materials marketed at a spe- 
cific time, and indefinite-quantity con- 
tracts calling for the successful bidder to 
purchase and usually remove all of one or 
more categories of waste made available 
by the Army at its installations over a con- 
siderable period of time. During peacetime 
the average post had used only one type of 
indefinite-quantity contract, which pro- 
vided for the removal of all kitchen waste 
and of dead animals. After 1940 the va- 
riety of materials that could be disposed 
of by this method increased rapidly. They 
included — besides food waste suitable for 
animal feeding — bones, fat, grease, egg 
crates, waste paper, wooden fruit con- 
tainers, tin cans, glassware, and other con- 
tainers. In addition, there were many 
special situations in which the indefinite- 
quantity contract was used. Such contracts 
were made whenever agreements were 
concluded with government agencies or 
private concerns for the absorption of the 
total or area output of the Army in certain 
materials. They were also entered into 
when dealers refused to negotiate for small 
quantities of scrap metals that were rela- 
tively inaccessible or that could be re- 
claimed only at great expense, or they 
were used to cover the removal of scrap 
from such large, inaccessible areas as 
Alaska. 11 " 

"'" This problem was discussed at the salvage and 
reclamation conference in the fall of 1942, at which 
time the chief of the Salvage Branch indicated that 
Procurement Regulation 7 was in the process of 
being rewritten. Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 76, 
remarks of Col Falkenau. 

" ,; Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, to CG Firr.t SvC, 
8 Sep 42, sub: Expediting of Sales of Scrap Metal. 

'"* Ltr, Col Falkenau to CG First SvC, 21 Get 42, 
sub: Expediting of Salv Sales. 

(1) WD Cir 116, Sec. Ill, 18 Jun 41, sub: Dis- 
posal of Waste. (2) AR 30-2145, par. 6. 

""[1st Ind], Col Falkenau, OQMG, to Seattle 
POE, 26 Mar 42, no sub. 



Since indefinite-quantity contracts were 
made on a yearly basis or for shorter pe- 
riods of time, they created a governmental 
obligation that lasted for many months. 
The control exercised by the OQMG over 
these contracts was therefore a matter of 
considerable importance and ran counter 
to the decentralization advocated by the 
ASF. When, in the spring of 1942, the 
Salvage Branch, OQMG, found that in- 
definite-quantity contracts were being 
closed at figures far below those which 
should have been obtained, it instructed 
the field to submit all such contracts cover- 
ing a period of more than three months, 
together with an abstract of bids, to the 
OQMG for approval before execution," 1 

In answer to ASF criticism of this policy, 
The Quartermaster General pointed out 
that the disposal of waste materials was in 
no sense parallel to the procurement of 
Army supplies, which was decentralized to 
the field. Disposal was carried on by a rela- 
tively large number of installations, and, 
unlike procuring depots, they were not 
under the direct supervision of the OQMG. 
In contrast to the procurement of supplies 
of standard quality on more or less rigid 
specifications, the disposal of waste mate- 
rials involved dealing with a mass of mate- 
rials far from uniform in quality, constantly 
changing in character, and marketed 
under conditions that fluctuated and 
varied widely from area to area. Under 
these conditions, the average post salvage 
officer had neither the information nor the 
experience to make proper term contracts, 
nor was it possible for the Salvage Branch 
to follow the normal procedure of issuing 
instructions sufficiently applicable to all 
situations to guide the exercise of local 
discretion." 2 

Headquarters, ASF, was willing to 
admit the existence of conditions justifying 

expert review of contracts, but it took issue 
with arguments against the feasibility of 
decentralization. Until qualified personnel 
became available in the field, however, it 
permitted OQMG instructions to remain 
in effect." :i In the meantime, the Salvage 
Branch modified its policy to the extent of 
exempting certain indefinite-quantity con- 
tracts from OQMG approval. 1 " Greater 
decentralization occurred after the transfer 
of salvage responsibilitv to Headquarters, 

In order to promote co-operation with 
dealers and to expedite the sale of mate- 
rials, local salvage officers were allowed in 
many cases to mitigate the rigid legal re- 
quirements of both the bidding and con- 
tractual procedure. In response to pressure 
to discontinue altogether the requirement 
of deposit or bond, the Salvage Branch 
indicated that, even though a sale w r as 
usually viewed as a purchase in reverse, 
procurement regulations did not apply. If 
deposits were not required, it could be 
assumed that some waste dealers, because 
of their manner of operating, would bid on 
materials in order to secure supplies for 

111 (1) Ltr, Col Falkcnau to QM Second CA. 15 
May 42, sub: Indefinite Quantity Contracts for Sale 
of Salv and Waste Materials. (2) Ltr, Falkenau to CG 
First SvC. 8 Mar 43. same sub. 

"-(1) Memo, Chief of Salv and Reclm Br, SOS, 
for TQMG, 18 Mar 42, sub: Indefinite Quantity- 
Contracts for Sale of Salv and Waste Materials. (2) 
Memo. Col Hamilton, OQMG, for ACofS for Opns, 
ASF, 24 Mar 43, same sub. 

" ; Memo, Maj Gen LeRoy Lutes, ACofS for Opns, 
ASF, for TQMG. 2 Apr 43, sub: Indefinite Quantity 
Contracts for Sale of Salv and Waste Materials. 

114 These contracts covered arrangements for the 
disposal of tin cans, egg crates, and agricultural con- 
tainers, and, later, for the disposal of food waste and 
waste paper il sold at prices within prescribed limits, 
and scrap lumber, glass and glassware, and any other 
item when sold at the maximum price permitted by 
OPA. Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, to CG Second SvC, 
21 May 43, sub: Indefinite Quantity Contracts for 
Sale of Salv and Waste Materials. 



sale but would remove only that portion for 
which they could find a ready market or 
which they could sell at a profit. This 
would result in a high ratio of nonperform- 
ance on contracts. 115 In most respects the 
Salvage Branch endeavored to secure full 
compliance with and performance under 

The necessity of using marginal outlets 
for salvage created a problem of prevent- 
ing irregularities in the administration of 
local sales. Ignorance of marketing condi- 
tions and methods on the part of untrained 
salvage officers in specific instances resulted 
in the sale of considerable quantities of 
goods that should not have been salvaged, 
and in loss to the government through 
marketing of articles in improper classifi- 
cations and at low prices. During the early 
emergency and first year of war especially, 
there were serious difficulties of this sort to 
be overcome. 116 

The general policies with respect to dis- 
posal of usable articles as distinct from 
scrap and waste were open to various in- 
terpretations, for there was an element of 
contradiction present. While urging that 
full use be extracted from every article of 
supply and equipment before its discard in 
salvage, official publications at the same 
time required that, as an aid to the civilian 
economy, articles be sold in their original 
form whenever possible under the descrip- 
tion "unserviceable for Army use." The 
interplay of these two policies had mixed 
effects. In some cases of critical shortage, it 
resulted in articles being used or worn be- 
yond possible reclamation, but in other 
cases, it resulted in the availability of rela- 
tively large quantities of usable items for 
sale, as for example, when combat stand- 
ards prevented the use of deteriorated 
equipment. Before the demands of over- 
seas civilian relief absorbed a large part of 

the discard of the Army, substantial quan- 
tities of salvaged clothing and other articles 
were sold intact to dealers, who showed 
great ingenuity in reclaiming them for sale 
on the civilian market. However, the mis- 
leading advertisements of some second- 
hand dealers brought unfavorable pub- 
licity to the Army by claiming that articles 
were "new" or "perfect" when in fact they 
were specially fabricated garments similar 
to but not Army goods. 1 ' 7 

Regulations urged the exercise of special 
caution to prevent the placing of new 
articles in salvage, either through fraud 
and collusion or inadvertence. 118 The pos- 
sibility of collusion was to be guarded 
against particularly where abnormally low 
bids were made in salvage sales, but collu- 
sion among bidders was naturally hard to 
detect. Low prices bid and received were 
most often due to the inexperience of sal- 
vage officers, who were ignorant of market 
possibilities and who were, in some cases, 
imposed upon by dealers though not nec- 
essarily under circumstances of collusion. 
Eventually salvage officers were given 
standard instructions to suspend sales when 
prices offered were not in line with market 
conditions or when evidence of collusion 
existed, and to forward a statement of 
reasons for the action to the OQMG. nil 

Special precautions were taken against 
other dishonest practices of contractors, 

11 > Min of Sal v and Reclm Conf, p. 72. 

In July 1942, for example, an investigation of 
the eastern market in salvaged Army clothing re- 
vealed that a number of large dealers were carrying 
on a thriving business in the sale of new and repaired 
garments bought as "rags." Rpt, Loyola M. Coyne to 
TQMG, 23-26 Jul 42, Insp Rpt of QM Activities in 
NY Area. 

117 (1) Chief of Sv Instls Div to Congressional Br, 
General Sv Div, OQMG, 17 Jun 42, sub: Communi- 
cation from Representative John Taber. (2) Rpt 
cited above, n. 116. 

" s AR 30-2145, par. 22. 

" tJ TM 38-303, par. 56. 



and spot checks of contract performance 
were urged, especially for dealers in food 
waste. The most common practices en- 
countered were the use of trucks with false 
bottoms or weighted trucks used only on 
first runs, and the removal of containers of 
cooked grease topped with trap grease, 
which was of lesser value. When dealers 
were discovered engaging in such practices, 
they were penalized by being placed on the 
official list of debarred bidders, but for 
such action to be taken it was necessary 
that there be evidence of fraud or at- 
tempted fraud against the government. 1 - 

Impact of WPB and OPA Controls 

WPB allocation and limitation orders 
and OPA price ceilings had their impact 
on the QMC salvage program just as they 
did on Quartermaster procurement of 
supplies. It was Army policy to sell mate- 
rials through regular trade channels as the 
most economical and efficient method of 
securing the proper utilization of scrap and 
waste. The great mass of unprepared 
materials could be handled only by dealers. 
In the case of iron and steel scrap, most 
large consumers placed their orders for 
scrap through scrap brokers who were able 
to arrange for the necessary preparation of 
the scrap as well as to guarantee its supply 
by dealers and broker- dealers. 

Not all waste materials, however, were 
handled by regular dealers. Materials 
offered for sale could be bid for by any re- 
sponsible dealer or consumer, and mate- 
rials suitable for direct consumption were 
frequently sold to mills and other con- 
sumers. For the most part only large 
quantities of industrial scrap and com- 
pletely segregated dormant scrap were 
suitable for direct consumption. More and 
more of these materials became subject to 

direct allocation orders as the WPB ex- 
tended its controls over the consumption 
of scrap and waste in 1942. Under these 
orders, sales directly to the designated con- 
sumer or his agent were automatically 
negotiated by the salvage officer, usually 
at ceiling prices. 1 " 1 

Salvage officers were directed to report 
large accumulations of scrap to the WPB, 
or the nearest regional office, to enable it 
to control the movement of scrap by allo- 
cations. The original intention was to ar- 
range formal clearances with the WPB 
only in respect to materials suitable for 
direct allocation to consumers, with the 
local salvage officer specifically required 
to request the issue of an allocation order. 
Because of the ambiguity of early direc- 
tives, many officers were under the im- 
pression that they were required to secure 
clearance from WPB regional offices for all 
sales of scrap. In the case of allocated sales 
this caused particular confusion and delay, 
since allocation orders were issued only by 
the central office of WPB. Later directives 
to salvage officers emphasized that the 
WPB regional offices functioned only to 
render advice and assistance to Army 
installations, although they were avail- 
able for consultation on any sale. Large 
accumulations of waste were reported to 
the service command headquarters, which 
transmitted the report through the 
OQMG to the WPB in Washington. 122 
Consultation between the QMC and the 
WPB on mutual problems in regard to the 
marketing of materials was necessarily fre- 
quent and close. 

It was the policy of the War Depart- 

12,1 [7th Ind], Col Falkenau to CG Eighth SvC, 25 
Sep 42, no sub. 

121 Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, p. 75. 

122 (1) Ibid., p. 7L. (2) OQMG Cir Ltr 412, 18 Nov 
42, sub: Salv Procedure. 



ment to co-operate with the Office of Price 
Administration and Civilian Supply 
(OPACS), later the OPA, in its price stabi- 
lization program. Because shortages of 
certain materials necessitated the imposi- 
tion of ceilings, the impact of pricing prob- 
lems on sales of scrap and waste was felt 
very early in the emergency. By April 1941 
Army installations had been instructed to 
reject bids in excess of ceiling prices. 12 '* 

The administration of price policies and 
regulations was a difficult matter for sal- 
vage officers and continued to be so even 
after the Army was relieved of part of its 
burden. The large number of items that 
were sold and the numerous maximum 
price regulations that were applicable im- 
posed an undue and unwarranted admin- 
istrative burden on salvage officers. This 
would have been true even if the salvage 
personnel at Army installations had re- 
mained more or less constant instead of 
undergoing a rapid turnover. The neces- 
sity of applying price ceilings complicated 
and slowed the work of local salvage of- 
ficers. They were apt to hold up sales until 
satisfied by higher authority that the ceil- 
ing price was being correctly applied. But 
any delay in sales meant a delay in the 
flow of salvaged property into civilian 
channels. The OQMG therefore sought to 
simplify the problems of the salvage officer 
by seeking agreements with the OPA that 
would relieve him of the necessity of study- 
ing and digesting OPA's various price 

Early difficulties centered around the 
application of ceilings in the sale of unpre- 
pared mixed iron and steel scrap, which 
involved an extremely intricate computa- 
tion. To alleviate this situation an agree- 
ment was made with OPACS permitting 
the sale of iron and steel scrap without 
reference to established price ceilings, but 

the successful bidder had to execute an af- 
fidavit of adherence to the OPACS sched- 
ule of maximum prices for such scrap. 1 '' 

This trend was continued when the 
General Maximum Price Regulation was 
issued early in 1942, for OPA amended the 
regulation to exempt from its application 
all used, damaged, and waste materials 
sold by the War and Navy Departments. 1 " 5 
While this action freed salvage officers 
from price restrictions in the sale of most 
miscellaneous materials, the exemption 
did not extend to specific price schedules 
OPA had issued in the case of the most im- 
portant scrap materials. This left the sit- 
uation with respect to Army enforcement 
of the regulations precisely where it had 
been before the General Maximum Price 
Regulation was issued. As a result of con- 
ferences between representatives of the 
OQMG and the OPA, policy was modified 
to the extent of relieving the Army of the 
responsibility of policing OPA price ceil- 
ings in salvage sales. Salvage officers were 
no longer required even to check price 
ceilings except in the case of sales to con- 
sumers. This was accomplished by extend- 
ing the use of the dealers and consumers' 
affidavits to the sale of all scrap and waste 
materials except industrial scrap. 1 "' 1 In 
order that OPA might itself police the ap- 
plication of these ceilings, copies of Army 
salvage contracts were made available to 
that agency. 

The QMC viewed these arrangements 

Procurement Cir 27. 10 Apr 4-1. 
'-' (1) Ltr, Col Falkenau to OPACS, 7 Jul 41, sub: 
SaLe of Iron and Steel Scrap. (2) OQMG Cir Ltr 141, 
9 Jul 4-1, sub: Sale of Waste Materials. 

' Amendment 8 to OPA Supplementary Regula- 
tion 1. 

( 1) Chief of Sv Instls Div to Dir of Procurement 
Div. OQMG, 8 Jul 42, sub: OPA Ltr 2262: FW. (2) 
Ltr. Leon Henderson, OPA Administrator, to 
TQMG, n. d., no sub. (3) OQMG Cir Ltr 316, 31 
Jul 41, sub: Sale of Waste Materials. 



as granting it full administrative relief ex- 
cept for the necessity of checking sales to 
consumers. Several months later the OPA 
took exception to the broad interpretation 
that the War Department was applying, 
and a lengthy discussion ensued. No 
change in military policy resulted, since by 
amendment the OPA extended the use of 
affidavits to sales of industrial scrap as well 
as to most used, damaged, and waste ma- 
terials. 127 The cumulative effect of these 

exemptions was to relieve the War Depart- 
ment of compliance with all price controls, 
except in certain minor instances, in its 
sale of scrap and waste materials. 

'- 7 (1) Memo. Col Kates, Chief of SaK' and Reclm 
Br, Dlstr Div, SOS, for TQMG, 23 Jan 43, sub: 
Amendment Co OQMG Cir Ltr 316. (2) 1st Ind, Col 
Falkenau, OQMG, to Distr Div, SOS, 2 Feb 43, on 
same memo. (3) Ltr, Falkenau to J. Phillip Wernette, 
OPA, 21 May 43, sub: Exemption of Salv Sales to 
Dealers. (4) Ltr, OPA to Falkenau, OQMG, 28 Jun 
43, no sub. 


Reclamation and Conservation 


At the time of Pearl Harbor, salvage op- 
erations of the Quartermaster Corps em- 
braced much more than the collection and 
disposal of scrap and waste materials for 
the Army. They also included the opera- 
tion of shops for the repair of Quarter- 
master items of clothing and equipment 
for reissue to the troops. The OQMG not 
only supervised the technical operations of 
Quartermaster repair shops but also for- 
mulated the policies and procedures under 
which they operated. 

In 1941 the QMC, as well as each in- 
terested agency of the War Department, 
arranged maintenance activities to meet 
its individual needs. As a consequence, no 
definite co-ordinated plan existed for 
maintenance of materiel throughout the 
Army. When the Services of Supply (later 
the Army Service Forces) was established 
in March 1942, an attempt was made to 
establish centralized control over mainte- 
nance operations. The Distribution Divi- 
sion, SOS, was made responsible for co- 
ordinating plans for maintenance, repair, 
and salvage of supplies and equipment of 
all types. 1 During the first year of the war, 
however, its attention was largely centered 
on the problem of scrap disposal with the 
eventual result that OQMG responsibility 
for staff supervision of salvage activities 

was transferred to the ASF. Maintenance 
operations continued to be directed by the 
individual technical services. It was not 
until April 1943 that this neglect by head- 
quarters of a field vital to the success of the 
war effort was corrected. Then a Mainte- 
nance Division was established and 
charged with the responsibility of develop- 
ing broad policies, methods, and standard 
operating procedures for the maintenance 
of equipment procured and issued by the 
ASF. It exercised staff supervision over 
reclamation activities, conducted field in- 
spections to insure full use of all facilities 
for reclamation purposes, and co-ordi- 
nated such activities between the technical 
services and the service commands. - From 
then until the end of the war it was 
actively engaged in directing and super- 
vising Army maintenance, although much 
of the systematic reclamation program it 
developed did not come to fruition before 
the war ended. 3 

1 SOS Orgn Manual, 30 Sep 42, p. 302.1 1. 

L> (!) ASF Cir 140, 6 Dec 43, sub: Reclm. (2) ASF 
Cir 275, 18 Jul 45, same sub. 

- :i For an account of the activities of the Mainte- 
nance Division, see Hist Rpt, Maintenance Problems, 
A History of the Maintenance Division, Headquar- 
ters, Army Service Forces, April 1943-1 September 
1945, OCMH. (Hereafter cited as Hist Rpt, Mainte- 
nance Problems.) 



Money Allowances Versus Issues in Kind 

The operation of shops, when necessary, 
for the purpose of altering and fitting uni- 
forms at the time of issue and for the repair 
and upkeep of equipment had been a re- 
sponsibility of the QMC since World War 
I, but the Corps operated no repair shops 
in the fall of 1940. No reclamation prob- 
lem existed at the time because before the 
national emergency enlisted men were re- 
sponsible for the maintenance of their 
clothing under a system of money allow- 
ances. This arrangement, which had been 
in effect since shortly after World War I, 
allowed the War Department to allot to 
each enlisted man initial and maintenance 
quotas expressed in monetary values, 
within the limits of which he was per- 
mitted to draw clothing from government 
stocks. 4 Each man's clothing account was 
settled periodically and at the end of his 
enlistment. On discharge he received in 
cash any balance that had not been drawn 
in clothing. His ability to stay well within 
his money allowance and yet care for his 
clothing and equipment was deemed the 
mark of a good soldier. In the event the 
enlisted man exceeded his allowance, he 
had to reimburse the government for the 
excess. Although articles in stock and the 
trickle of reclaimable articles turned in by 
men at the end'of their enlistment period 
or on earlier discharge might require reno- 
vation, no reclamation problem arose un- 
der this system. Each enlisted man was re- 
quired to arrange and pay for the cleaning 
and upkeep of all clothing issued to him 
under his money allowance, except for 
necessary alterations made at the time of 

This peacetime system could not be ap- 
plied during war, however, for the clerical 
work of administering money accounts for 

an expanding army would have been pro- 
hibitive. Furthermore, the additional wear 
and tear on clothing resulting from battle 
training and maneuvers would have made 
the existing money allowances unfair to 
the soldier and would have allowed no 
early basis for the calculation of a fair 
money allowance. Early in the emergency, 
there was unanimous agreement that a 
system based on issues in kind, similar to 
that used in World War I, would have to be 
adopted in the event of war, and that in 
theaters of operations, where formal prop- 
erty accounting would have to be held to 
a minimum, a system of money accounts 
would be completely unworkable. 5 

Nevertheless, when the expansion of 
training operations during the months be- 
fore Pearl Harbor forced consideration of 
extensive revisions to the peacetime meth- 
od of issue, numerous misgivings were 
voiced. It was anticipated that when cloth- 
ing was issued in kind all restraints would 
be removed from overzealous commanders 
who could hardly be expected to be cost 
conscious. 11 Since great emphasis was 
placed on the physical appearance of 
troops in evaluating the efficiency of com- 
manding officers, it was argued that issues 
in kind would lead to replacement of par- 
tially worn garments that should have 
been retained in service, and would result 
in conflict with conservation measures. 
The purposes of official policies would 
thereby be defeated. Various suggestions 
were made for coping with these prob- 

' AR 615-40, 30 Jun 25, sub: EM Clo— Allow- 
ances, Accounts and Disp. For the official list of cloth- 
ing allowances and established prices of clothing, sec 
AR 30-3000. 

Memo, TQMG for Gen Corbin, OQMG, 1 Jul 
40, sub: Change in System of Clo Allowances. 

" Memo, Col Edward B. McKinlcy, Chief of Fiscal 
Div, for TQMG, 12 Aug 40, sub: Cost Rpts on Clo 
Issued in Kind. 



lems, 7 but late in the summer of 1940 The 
Quartermaster General appointed a board 
of officers to draft regulations for changing 
to a simple system of issues in kind, retain- 
ing only those checks on extravagance or 
dishonesty that could be enforced through 
command relationships, or, in individual 
cases, through the medium of reports of 
survey and other disciplinary action. The 
new system was promulgated early in Sep- 
tember. 8 The change involved the as- 
sumption by the government of responsi- 
bility for the repair and reclamation of 
clothing issued to the enlisted man and 
consequently resulted in the initiation of a 
repair shop program. 

Utilization of Obsolete and 
Class B Clothing 

The procedures of the repair shop pro- 
gram were greatly influenced by the early 
need to conserve clothing and equipage. 
In June 1940 stocks of practically all items 
of clothing were very low. Furthermore, 
since approximately nine months were re- 
quired to convert dollars into appreciable 
quantities of clothing and equipage, 
enough time had not elapsed by fall for 
stocks to be procured in sufficient quanti- 
ties under new appropriations to meet re- 
quirements resulting from the mobiliza- 
tion of the National Guard and the induc- 
tion of large numbers of selectees. During 
the initial period of mobilization, it was 
absolutely essential to utilize so-called con- 
tingent stocks, that is, stocks held in stor- 
age as war reserves and for the National 
Guard and the Reserve Officers' Training 
Corps (ROTC). These were further sup- 
plemented by transfers of excess stocks 
from the Civilian Conservation Corps." A 
large proportion of this clothing was of 
limited standard, substitute standard, and 

obsolete classification, including, for ex- 
ample, large quantities of World War I 
spiral leggings, knee breeches, and coats 
with standing collars, as well as web equip- 
ment and tentage of various designs, tex- 
tures, and shades. Much of this materiel 
had long been in closed storage under im- 
proper conditions and was consequently 
in various stages of disrepair. The QMC 
placed in service considerable amounts of 
deteriorated and nondescript clothing and 
equipment, and it authorized various 
special uses for obsolete articles. 111 

By March 1941, production of clothing 
had reached a point where most articles 
of obsolete clothing could be withdrawn 
from the troops, 11 and stocks of these arti- 
cles could be returned to regional and cen- 
tral storage pending disposition to meet 
various special needs or as salvage. During 
the eight months when these substandard 
stocks were issued, comparatively small 
inroads had been made on the total re- 
sources of this kind, and the utilization 
and disposal of obsolete items became at 
once a major problem. 

In the meantime, there had been reper- 
cussions from field commanders who not 
unnaturally resented being obliged to sup- 

7 See, for example. Chief of Sup Div to Chief of 
Adm Div. OQMG. 27 Jun 40, sub: Change in System 
of Clo Allowanees. 

" WD Cir 97, 7 Sep 40. 

" (1) Memo. Gen Corbin. OQMG. for ACofS G-4, 
5 Sep 40, sub: Use of Substitute Items of Clo for Tng 
Program. (2) WD Cir 98, 9 Sep 40. sub: Issues of Sub- 
stitute Items of Clo. 

111 For example, olive drab cotton breeches, of 
which there were large quantities on hand, were 
authorized for issue as work garments, in addition to 
denim trousers. WD Cir 11, 1 6 Jan 4 1 . Sec. 1 1, sub: 
Issue of Cotton Breeches. 

11 Exceptions were obsolete overcoats, which were 
not replaced until the fall of 1941, and the remainder 
of some 2.000,000 pairs of trousers, manufactured 
from melton cloth and acquired from the CCC, which 
were issued until stocks were exhausted. 



ply their units with a motley array of gar- 
ments and equipment. Although the 
OQMG viewed the use of such articles as 
an emergency measure to be discontinued 
as soon as the status of supply permitted, 
the consistent and determined objection 
on the part of the troops to the use of obso- 
lete clothing was so strong that the QMC 
and other War Department agencies had 
to take definite and continued action to 
see that such clothing was actually issued 
to the soldiers. 

The policy of enforcing the consump- 
tion of stocks of renovated clothing and 
equipment, designated as Class B, prior to 
the issue of new items, Class A, was by no 
means new and had been a source of con- 
troversy under peacetime conditions. After 
World War I, efforts to issue renovated 
clothing had produced unsatisfactory re- 
sults. At that time the problem had been 
partially solved by the return to the 
money-allowance system." Since the be- 
ginning of the national emergency all di- 
rectives on procedure had reiterated the 
responsibility of commanding officers for 
the utilization of renovated clothing, when 
available, before the issue of new 
clothing. 1 ' 

A serious related problem was the ex- 
tremely rapid turnover and high mortality 
rate of substandard articles that were put 
into service, even if the low wear expect- 
ancy of these items was taken into consid- 
eration. This was especially noticeable as 
new equipment became increasingly avail- 
able and various units hastened to have 
their obsolete equipment condemned and 
turned in for salvage in order to secure 
replacements. 11 The special uses later 
found for substandard articles of all types 
undoubtedly were more effective in con- 
serving resources of this kind than the 
type of issue for general purposes enforced 

as a result of the early pressure of hasty 

Early difficulties in utilization of obso- 
lete and substandard articles were hardly 
overcome and a system outlined for issues 
in kind and renovation of articles, when a 
special problem loomed that promised to 
test many related policies. Toward the 
close of the first year of national selective 
service, the Army faced the prospect of re- 
using or disposing of relatively large quan- 
tities of clothing and equipage to be turned 
in by men discharged after the designated 
year of service. Although this problem 
never materialized on a large scale since 
most of the men were actually retained in 
the Army following Congressional exten- 
sion of their term of service, the anticipa- 
tion of it caused a general examination, in 
the light of early experience, of existing 
basic policies that called for the utilization 
of renovated clothing. 

The seriousness of the agitation 1 " for a 
reversal of conservation policy was re- 

~ - (1) Ltr, Gen Corbin. OQMG, to IG, 25 Oct 40, 
sub: Issue and Renovation of Obsolete Clo. (2) Llr. 
TAG to CGs of All Armies el al. , 4 Nov 40. same sub. 
(3) Memo, Col Robert M. Littlejohn. OQMG, for 
ACofS G-4, 18 Jan 41 , sub: Utilization of Obsolete 
and Renovated Clo. 

" Rptof TQMG for FY 1928. pp. 21.-22. 

M See. for example (1) WD Cir 97. 7 Sep 40, and 
(2) WD Cir 8, 8 Jan 41. 

lr ' (1) Memo, Col Littlejohn, OQMG, for ACofS 
G-4, 18 Jan 41, sub: Utilization of Obsolete and Re- 
novated Clo. This practice was widespread, as in the 
case of obsolete coats and of pyramidal tents of the old 
model that were usable with standard tent frames. 
(2) See also, Memo. Gen Corbin, OQMG, for ACofS 
G-4, 17 Sep 41, sub: Conserving C&E. 

" ; Objections from the field were based primarily 
upon the adverse effect of renovated clothing on troop 
morale and consequently upon discipline and effi- 
ciency. See, for example ( 1) Ltr, Maj Gen Kenyon A. 
Joyce, Hq Ninth Army Corps, to TAG. 9 Sep 41, sub: 
Issue of Reconditioned Clo; (2) 1st Ind, Lt Gen John 
L. De Witt, CG Fourth Army, to TAG, 9 Sep 41, on 
same ltr; and (3) Ltr, Col John G. Tyndall, IGD, to 
CG Fourth Army, 25 Sep 4 1 , sub: Adequacy of Au- 
thorized Clo and Use of Class B. 



vealed by several alternative proposals 
made for the disposal of accumulations of 
unserviceable and used clothing expected 
to be turned in by discharged selectees and 
from other sources. 17 One suggestion 
would have allowed the enlisted man 
upon discharge or transfer to a reserve 
component to retain permanently, with a 
few exceptions, all articles of individual 
clothing issued to him under Tables of 
Basic Allowances. Other proposals called 
for him to turn in such clothing, which 
was then either to be renovated and held 
in depots as a reserve or to be disposed of 
by sale as salvage. 

All of these proposals were immediately 
attacked on the general ground that none 
of them supported adequately a long- 
range plan of conservation necessitated by 
the scarcity of critical materials and the 
strain imposed upon production facili- 
ties. 18 The outcome of this controversy was 
the vindication of the existing conserva- 
tion policy. However, efforts were made to 
alleviate the shortcomings of the system of 
renovation and reuse of property. The 
policy of allowing the discharged enlisted 
man to retain a few designated items of 
clothing was continued, though the num- 
ber of articles retained was later reduced. 19 
Commanding officers of all echelons were 
required to exercise the utmost economy 
in requisitioning clothing and equipage 
and to make certain that serviceable arti- 
cles were not salvaged and that new items 
were not issued when reclaimed ones were 
available. One concession was made to the 
critics of renovated clothing. Each enlisted 
man was to have at all times one present- 
able outfit of wool and one of cotton outer 
clothing, suitable for wear at ceremonies 
and on pass or furlough. Since only one 
wool coat, one overcoat, and one garrison 
cap were authorized for each enlisted 

man, suitability of a renovated article for 
issue to meet this requirement became the 
governing factor in determining whether 
or not such articles of outer clothing would 
be renovated and reissued. In all other 
cases, appearance was to be subordinated 
to actual serviceability in determining 
whether an item was to be used. Although 
provision was thus made for the use of 
renovated clothing, whenever practicable 
all clothing after renovation was to be re- 
turned to the original wearer." 

Shortly after Pearl Harbor, the issue of 
available Class B clothing and equipage 
was made mandatory under all conditions 
at reception centers, replacement training 
centers, posts, camps, and stations, and 
even at ports and staging areas. 21 Later 
modification of this policy requiring the 
re-equipping and reclothing of organiza- 
tions alerted for shipment to ports of em- 
barkation with Class A clothing and 
equipment was an exceedingly significant 
development. It not only resulted in a tre- 
mendous influx of unserviceable items 
from staging areas and ports of embarka- 
tion that placed a burden on repair facili- 
ties, but it also necessitated the mainte- 
nance of considerable station and depot 
stocks throughout the United States to 
meet this particular demand. Moreover, 
since overseas movement orders for par- 
ticular organizations were frequently 

17 Ltr, Maj Ewing H. France to Col Littlejohn, 
Chief of G&E Branch, OQMG, 7 Jul 41, sub: Disp of 
Clo Turned In (study on same sub enclosed). 

IK (1) Ibid. (2) See earlier comments, Chief of Salv 
Br to Chief of C&E Br, OQMG, 24 Jun 4 1 , sub: Disp 
of Clo Turned In. 

19 WD Gir 74, 13 Mar 42, sub: Instructions Gov- 
erning Issue, Conserv, and Disp of C&E. 

,J " WD Cir 241. 21 Nov 41. sub: C&E 

(1) Rad, TAG to CG First CA et ai, 23 Jan 42, 
AG 246,5 (1-21-42) MO-D. (2) WD Cir 74, 13 Mar 
42, sub: Instructions Governing Issue, Conserv, and 
Disp of C&E. 



changed to later dates, it became neces- 
sary to re-equip them with additional 
Class A items at such subsequent times. In 
the meantime, the re-enunciation of policy 
on the use of renovated clothing increased 
the pressure for improvement of local re- 
pair services and laid the groundwork for 
such early refinements of procedures, in- 
cluding serviceability standards, as were 

Repair Shop System 

The substitution of issues in kind for the 
clothing money allowance, the difficulties 
of procurement and distribution, and con- 
siderations of economy and conservation, 
all made it necessary for the government 
to provide for the repair and reclamation 
of items of clothing and equipage issued to 
enlisted personnel. As a consequence, the 
War Department in the fall of 1940 di- 
rected that all repairs to shoes and all 
major repairs to clothing were to be ac- 
complished at government expense, al- 
though enlisted men would continue to 
pay for laundry and dry-cleanirfg service 
as they had in the past and would also be 
responsible for minor repairs to clothing, 
such as mending rips and replacing but- 
tons. 22 

At that time there were no Army cloth- 
ing repair shops in existence. Alteration of 
uniforms at the time of issue as well as shoe 
repair had been accomplished since World 
War I by local commercial contract, 
though experience had demonstrated the 
impossibility of obtaining satisfactory re- 
sults by this method. Specifications had 
prescribed the quality of materials and 
workmanship in all contracts for repair 
services, but, in general, workmanship had 
been poor, materials inferior, and return 
of repaired articles had been unduly de- 

layed, 23 In contrast, CCC operation of 
reclamation plants at the Columbus and 
the Schenectady General Depots had re- 
vealed that a better shoe repair job was 
usually obtained in government renovat- 
ing plants and that considerable money 
was saved. 24 The OQMG drew upon this 
experience, as well as that of World War I, 
in inaugurating its program. 

Clothing and Equipment Repair Shops 

To provide repair services the OQMG 
established clothing and equipment repair 
shops (later called reclamation shops) at 
Army camps. The type selected depended 
upon the strength of the station to be 
served. Thus a two-unit shop served 
40,000 men; a one-unit shop made repairs 
for 20,000; and a one-quarter-unit shop 
provided repair service for 5,000 men. In 
areas where greater numbers of troops re- 
quired services, a two-unit shop was op- 
erated on a two-shift basis or, if necessary, 
facilities were added to provide the needed 
capacity. 25 For the most part these shops 
were established in existing structures at 
Army camps in order to hold new con- 
struction to a minimum. Floor layout 
plans therefore varied considerably, since 
only a small portion of reclamation activi- 
ties in the field was housed in buildings 
specifically constructed for reclamation 

-- WD Cir 107, Sec. II, 24 Sep 40, sub: Laundry, 
Dry Cleaning, and Shoe Repair. 

Ji Chief of Sup Div to Chief of Constr Div, OQMG, 
22 Apr 41, sub: QM C&E Repair Shops. 

-' Memo, Maj Frederick H. Koerbel for Col Ed- 
mund B. Gregory, OQMG, 24 Apr 39, sub: Insp of 
CCC Reclm and Salv Plants. 

- 5 (1) Chief of Sup Div to Chief of Adm Div, 
OQMG, 6 Nov 40, sub: Activation of QM Units. (2) 
Ltr, Gen Corbin, OQMG, to QM First CA, 20 Nov 
40, sub: Establishment of C&E Repair Shops. (3) Min 
of Salv and Reclm Conf, OQMG, 5-9 Oct 42, p. 1 1. 



ii v 



REPAIRING MESS KITS, Fort /)ran.f to/wr % fort /Wn.f, Maif. 

Clothing and equipment repair shops 
were organized into various sections ac- 
cording to the type of work to be done. A 
complete reclamation shop included a 
clothing and textile repair section, a shoe 
repair section, a canvas and webbing re- 
pair section, a mattress and pillow reno- 
vating section, and a miscellaneous repair 
section designed to accomplish repair of 
metal goods and other items that could 
not be repaired in the other sections. 
Complete reclamation shops were intended 
to be established only at installations re- 
quiring one-unit or larger shops. Shops 
serving 5,000 troops or less originally con- 
tained only shoe repair sections. A cloth- 
ing and textile repair section as well as a 

shoe repair section was usually found at 
stations serving 10,000 to 20,000 men. 
Later a miscellaneous repair section was 
also deemed necessary. Any combinations 
of sections could be established to furnish 
stations with all necessary facilities. 

It was the policy of the OQMG to re- 
pair and reclaim clothing and equipment 
in all instances possible in government- 
operated shops, but the accomplishment of 
this work was not limited to the use of 
reclamation shops. If existing government- 
operated facilities were insufficient, the use 
of additional facilities might be obtained 
by means of commercial contract. This 
method was used particularly for the re- 
pair of shoes and tentage and was adopted 



primarily to take care of peak loads that 
could not be handled in the reclamation 

The repair and reclamation of clothing 
and equipage by commercial contract, 
however, was not recommended. Addi- 
tional facilities for work were avail- 
able in Work Projects Administration 
(WPA) sewing rooms, located in every 
area, which were intended to be used as 
"subsidiary facilities to take care of the 
overflow from reclamation shops." ~ fi 
These arrangements were the result of a 
plan of operation worked out by agree- 
ment between representatives of the 
OQMG and the WPA in the summer of 
1942. 27 As the year drew to a close, the 
Deputy Commissioner of the WPA noti- 
fied the OQMG that "the increasing de- 
mand for manpower and the consequent 
decrease in persons for whom WPA needs 
to find employment makes it appear im- 
practicable to continue assistance to other 
Federal agencies as a part of the WPA pro- 
gram beyond February 1, 1943." iS The 
President ordered liquidation of the 
agency by 30 June. The WPA sought an 
orderly termination of its projects, and in 
conferences with OQMG representatives 
considered the disposition of WPA sewing 
equipment, its transfer to Army reclama- 
tion shops, and the possibility of finding 
suitable experienced personnel for these 
shops among operators released by the 
WPA.'"' Similar action to acquire equip- 
ment that could be utilized in reclamation 
activities was taken later when Congress 
liquidated the National Youth Adminis- 
tration in the summer of 1943. "' 

Post quartermasters directed the oper- 
ation of reclamation shops, whose person- 
nel was largely civilian, secured from local 
civil service registers. It was the primary 
function of these shops to repair shoes and 

clothing for return to the original wearer, 
to repair and reclaim clothing (except 
shoes) and equipment for return to stock, 
and to alter clothing to provide proper fit 
whenever necessary. 

The OQMG in the fall of 1940 had pro- 
posed establishing some forty reclamation 
shops and had called upon the corps area 
quartermasters for reports on available 
space and personnel that could be utilized 
for the purpose. By the end of June 1941 , 
it had established only twenty-five recla- 
mation shops at cantonments throughout 
the Army.' u The delay in swinging the 
program into high gear was attributable 
largely to the lack of funds for construc- 
tion. Shoe repair shops could be estab- 
lished only where existing space was made 
available, and in the beginning "there was 
a general lack of interest locally and a dis- 
inclination to make existing space avail- 
able." :iJ After some months of experience 
with repair service obtained by commer- 
cial contract, local quartermasters indi- 
cated that they wanted repair shops and 
made the necessary space arrangements 
for them, even though the Army repair 

-" Min of Sal v and Reclm Conf, p. 1 3. 

(1) Gen Gorbin, OQMG, to Actg Commis- 
sioner, WPA, 27 Feb 42, no sub. (2) Ltr. Florence 
Kerr. Asst Commissioner, WPA. to OQMG, 4 Jun 
42.itosub. (3) Col Hamilton, OQMG, to Flor- 
ence Kerr. WPA, 1 1 Aug 42. no sub. and reply 14 
Aug 42. 

Ltr. George H. Field to OQMG. 5 Dec 42, no 


- (1) Ltr. Col Falkenau, OQMG. to CG First SvC, 
23 Dec 42. sub: Transfer of WPA Equip. (2) Ltr, 
Falkenau to CG First SvC. 4 Jan 43, sub: Utilization 
of WPA Pers. 

"'(1) Memo, Dir of Production Div. ASF, for 
TQMG. 10 Jul 43. sub: Liquidation of XYA. (2) [1st 
Ind], Ilq Eighth SvC to TQMG, 18 Aug 43. 

11 Chief of SaK' Br to Public Relations Off, Sup. Div, 
OQMG, 8 Jul 41, sub: Summary of Accomplishments 
During Past Year. 

; - Gen Gorbin to DQMG, 24 Jun 41, sub: QM 
C&E Repair Shops. 



shops could not be opened until existing 
commercial contracts had expired. 

After Pearl Harbor the repair shop pro- 
gram expanded rapidly. This development 
was stimulated by a reduction in the cloth- 
ing allowances to enlisted men, a move de- 
signed to enable the War Department to 
meet requirements for initial issue created 
by the accelerated induction program. 33 
As a result it was estimated that 3,000,000 
cotton khaki shirts, 3,000,000 cotton khaki 
trousers, 1,000,000 each of denim or her- 
ringbone twill jackets and trousers, 500,000 
overcoats, 1,500,000 pairs of service shoes, 
as well as wool underclothing and hand- 
kerchiefs, would be turned in as excess. It 
was extremely important that all these 
items, except the underclothing and hand- 
kerchiefs, be renovated and reissued with- 
out delay. 34 

The chief of the Salvage Branch, 
OQMG, reported that the facilities of only 
twenty-six complete clothing and equip- 
ment repair shops, with thirty-one addi- 
tional shoe repair sections at smaller 
camps, were immediately available. Sev- 
eral other shops had been authorized and 
were under construction, but these were 
not sufficient to take care of all local re- 
quirements and would have to be supple- 
mented by commercial contracts. By the 
use of both government and commercial 
facilities, the backlog of used garments 
awaiting renovation could be handled. 3 ' 

Expansion of the repair shop program 
was further stimulated early in 1942 by 
another change in policy. Immediately 
after Pearl Harbor the War Department 
had announced that without exception 
renovated clothing and equipment would 
be issued prior to Class A items. Within 
little more than a month from the time this 
priority was announced, the policy was 

amended to require the issue of only Class 
A clothing and individual equipment as 
replacements for troops alerted for over- 
seas movement. 3K The effect was to in- 
crease tremendously the work load of 
clothing and equipment repair shops. The 
inspection of items in the hands of troops 
alerted for overseas movement was ex- 
pected to lead to the replacement of only 
those "unsuitable for extended field serv- 
ice" rather than to a complete re-equip- 
ping of alerted units with new articles. 
This directive, however, was subject to dif- 
ferent interpretations. Unit commanders 
naturally applied it in such a way as to 
enable them to obtain new equipment. 
Quartermasters, on the other hand, bound 
by conservation policies, were inclined to 
keep equipment in the hands of the units 
if the items possessed serviceability or 
could be repaired for extended field use. 
Later, efforts were made to define more 
precisely standards of serviceability for 
equipment retained by alerted units. Re- 
pair service for alerted units had priority 
over all other work in repair shops, and 
the OQMG took action to see that such 
shops were established at all staging areas 
as they were activated. 37 

Originally repair of shoes and clothing 
was directed toward keeping these items 
in the hands of the user. As the war pro- 

31 WD Cir 74, 13 Mar 42, sub: Instructions Gov- 
erning Issue, Gonserv, and Disp of C&E, 

" Maj France, C&E Br, to Chief of Salv Br, 
OQMG. 1 1 Feb 42, sub: Renovation of Clo to be 
Turned in by EM. 

15 Chief of Salv Br to Chief of C&E Br, OQMG, 
1 3 Feb 42. sub: R enovation of Clo to be Turned in 
by EM. 

36 (1) WD Cir 74, 13 Mar 42, sub: Instructions 
Governing Issue, Conserv, and Disp of C&E. (2) WD 
Cir 1 15, Sec. II, 20 Apr 42, same sub. 

17 Ltr, Gen Corbin, OQMG, to ACofS G-4, 29 Jan 
42, sub: C&E Repair Shops for Staging Areas. 



gressed and as troops moved to overseas 
theaters, requirements for initial issue and 
replacements of Quartermaster clothing 
and equipment reached tremendous pro- 
portions. The necessity of repairing Quar- 
termaster property for return to stock for 
reissue became increasingly obvious. The 
number of clothing and equipment repair 
shops at posts, camps, and stations ex- 
panded from the 25 in operation by July 
1941 to 368 shops by the end of the war. 38 
They repaired millions of items of clothing, 
shoes, and equipment, and, together with 
other Quartermaster repair facilities, con- 
tributed effectively to the reduction of new 
procurements of Quartermaster items. 

Shoe Rebuilding Program 

The reduction in the clothing allowance 
early in 1942 posed a special problem with 
reference to the shoes that were to be 
turned in. It had been Quartermaster 
policy to repair shoes only when they 
could be returned to the original wearer.™ 
Otherwise they were disposed of without 
repair by sale as salvage. This policy was 
abandoned in January 1942 when the 
issue of Class B clothing, including shoes, 
was made mandatory under all conditions. 
In order to avoid any possibility of disease 
or injury to the new wearer's feet, shoes 
could not be reissued without sterilization, 
complete rebuilding, and refinishing. As a 
consequence, the OQMG decided to 
establish one or more fully equipped shoe 
rebuilding factories to take care of the im- 
mediate accumulation of excess shoes 
caused by the revision of Table of Basic 
Allowances 21 and to continue their oper- 
ation as a permanent part of the program 
in order to conserve shoes and leather. 40 

The first of these factories was estab- 
lished at Buford, Ga., where on 19 March 

1942 the War Department entered into a 
contract with Bona Allen, Inc., for the 
rental of certain lands, buildings, and 
equipment. Actual operations did not be- 
gin until June, but from then until 31 
August 1943 the QMC operated this 
plant, which was attached to the Atlanta 
Quartermaster Depot under the imme- 
diate command of the Quartermaster sup- 
ply officer. 41 

It was estimated that when the Buford 
plant reached its maximum operating 
capacity (about 1 December 1942), it 
would produce 5,000 pairs of rebuilt serv- 
ice shoes per eight-hour shift. The shop 
could not accomplish the rebuilding of 
1,500,000 pairs of shoes within a year, let 
alone within the three months suggested 
by the Clothing and Equipage Branch. 
Since it was also considered desirable to 
provide for the rebuilding of shoes in sal- 
vage and shoes that could not be repaired 
by the facilities available in the clothing 
and equipment repair shops, the War De- 
partment negotiated a contract with the 
International Shoe Co. of St. Louis for the 
rebuilding of Army service shoes in its 
Bluff City factory at Hannibal, Mo. 42 This 
factory would also have a maximum ca- 
pacity of 5,000 pairs per eight-hour shift. 

In the summer of 1943 the War Depart- 
ment made another contract with the In- 
ternational Shoe Co., effective 1 Septem- 
ber, which transferred the operation at the 

18 QM Manual, QMC 14-3, August 1945, sub: QM 
Installations in Continental U.S., pp. 56-66. 

■>" WD Cir 126, 28 Jun 41, sub: Insp of Shoes for 

40 Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, to QM First CA, 
6 Apr 42, sub: Renovation of Class B Shoes. 

41 For a detailed account of operations at Buford, 
see T. E. Downey, U.S. Army Shop, Buford, Georgia 
(hist rpt, Atlanta QMD, Aug 43), Hist Br, OQMG. 

42 Salv Br to Dir of Sv Instls Div, 18 Jul 42, sub: 
Rebuilding "of Sv Shoes. 

Buford factory to that company. By that 
time the volume of shoes to be rebuilt war- 
ranted the addition of another plant, and 
a supplemental agreement was made with 
the company for the operation of a third 
shoe rebuilding factory at Quincy, 111. 41 ' 

As a result of the 1 February 1944 
downward revision of the Army Supply 
Program, which necessitated a cutback in 
production of rebuilt shoes, it became nec- 
essary to terminate the contract for the 
operation of the Buford factory, effective 
30 April, but the other two plants con- 
tinued to function until the end of the war. 
During the period of QMC operation of 
the Buford plant (fourteen- months) 1,505,- 
589 pairs of shoes were rebuilt, while 

under direction of the International Shoe 
Co., (eight months) 1,1 18,652 pairs of re- 
paired shoes were produced. 44 

Regional Repair Shops 

Repair shops at posts, camps, and sta- 
tions functioned as reclamation centers for 
clothing and equipage intended for return 

Sv lnslls Div to Procurement Div, 24 Nov 43, 
sub: Expansion of Shoe Rebuilding Facilities. 

'■(1) Memo, Col Hamilton, OQMG, for Readj 
Div, ASF, 21 Mar 44, sub: Cutback in Production of 
Rebuilt Sv Shoes. (2) Audit Rpt, Chief of Cost and 
Price Analysis Br to TQMG, 26 Jun 44, sub: Final 
Audit Rpt. This report showed that a total of 2,624,- 
241 pairs of service shoes were rebuilt at a total cost of 
87,366,825.51, which included cost of materials, labor, 
equipment, contractor's fees, depreciation, and 



to the original user or for return to stock 
for reissue at the same post, camp, or sta- 
tion. They were not concerned with the 
processing of large quantities of reparable 
property turned in by troops alerted for 
overseas movement or with the volume of 
unserviceable clothing and equipment re- 
turned from overseas theaters, where rec- 
lamation equipment was often too limited 
to allow for major repair activities. The 
accumulation of such unserviceable prop- 
erty represented a proportionate require- 
ment for replacement issue and therefore 
for the procurement of items, the raw ma- 
terials for which were in critical supply. 

The increasing volume of Quartermas- 
ter property requiring repair soon ex- 
ceeded the capacity of reclamation facil- 
ities in service commands, although they 
had been continually expanded and a 
secondary function of repair for reissue 
anywhere within the service command 
had been added. Beginning in early 1943, 
a number of regional repair shops were 
established at central points in certain of 
the service commands to relieve station 
shops of the burden of repairing clothing 
and equipage for return to stock and re- 
issue. Originally it had been proposed that 
centralized facilities be established or that 
existing facilities be designated to perform 
this type of work in each service command, 
with station shops repairing items for re- 
turn to stock only to the extent necessary 
to keep personnel and equipment produc- 
ing when there was a shortage of work for 
return to the original wearer. ' ' This pro- 
gram, however, was temporarily held in 
abeyance when the growing volume of 
material returned from overseas and re- 
ceipts of articles from domestic sources, 
such as staging areas, influenced the initia- 
tion of plans for the establishment of a 
number of repair subdepots. 

Repair Subdepots 

Regional shops and clothing and equip- 
ment repair shops at posts, camps, and sta- 
tions were under the supervision and 
control of the commanding generals of the 
service commands. As the volume of 
Quartermaster materiel accumulating in 
this country and returned from overseas 
mounted, the necessity of supervising local 
activities closely in order to achieve con- 
servation goals became acute. With repair 
work decentralized to hundreds of small 
shops scattered throughout the service 
commands, it was difficult to establish and 
maintain uniform standards of work. Serv- 
ice command progress in supervision of 
these shops, moreover, was handicapped 
by lack of personnel available for the pur- 

The Quartermaster General felt that 
the problem could best be solved by an ex- 
pansion of centrally controlled activities. 
After studying the question, the OQMG 
late in 1942 decided to concentrate repair 
of Quartermaster articles for return to 
stock, as distinct from local repair service 
for troop units, in special subdepot instal- 
lations of the Corps. u ' It was motivated 
partially by the desire to bring these activ- 
ities under its immediate supervision, par- 
ticularly since this seemed to be the only 
feasible way to concentrate them where 
needed and to promote the desired uni- 
formity and efficiency of operation. In 
these subdepots conservation was treated 
as an operating function of the QMC 

(1) Ltr. Col Falkenau, OQMG, to CG First SvC, 
25 Nov 42, sub: Centralization of Reclm Activities. 
(2) Ltr, Hq Eighth SvC to All Posts, Camps, Stations, 
8 Mar 43. no sub. 

"' (1) Ltr, Col Falkcnau, OQMG, to CG First SvC, 
25 Nov 42. sub: Centralization of Reclm Activities. 
(2) "Repair Depots Recondition Salvaged Equip- 
ment," QMR, XXIII (July-August 1943), 96-97. 



Early in 1943 The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral was given verbal authorization by the 
Distribution Division, SOS, for the estab- 
lishment of reclamation depots as sub- 
depots of existing Quartermaster installa- 
tions. Accordingly, the California Quar- 
termaster Repair Subdepot was activated 
on 15 February and the Jersey City Quar- 
termaster Repair Subdepot on 19 May. 
Establishment of other repair subdepots 
followed, and at the end of the war six of 
them were in operation. 47 

It was the function of these subdepots 
to repair for return to depot stock both 
materiel shipped from overseas theaters 
and that accumulating in the several serv- 
ice commands served by such subdepots. 
Two principal reasons determined the 
adoption of the policy of authorizing re- 
gional and central shops to repair for re- 
turn to depot stock and limiting reclama- 
tion shops at posts, camps, and stations to 
repair for return to the user or, to a limited 
degree, for return to local stocks only. In 
the first place, a large installation operat- 
ing with production-line methods could 
produce much more work per employee 
than a number of small shops that were 
forced to interrupt their production for 
special jobs for individual wearers. This 
resulted in the conservation of critical 
manpower. Second, quality control of the 
product and development of uniform re- 
pair standards for Class B issue could not 
be attained when such reclamation work 
was done by hundreds of shops, many of 
which were unable to provide the kind of 
supervision that large installations used 
effectively. 48 

As the need to promote technical uni- 
formity and effective management of all 
repair shops increased, the OQMG cre- 
ated new regional agencies to supervise 
the work of the many central and local 

facilities operating within large areas. 
These field reclamation and field mainte- 
nance offices — directly responsible to The 
Quartermaster General, and established 
at or near depots and functioning for one 
or more service command areas — exer- 
cised technical supervision and control 
over operations in repair subdepots and in 
regional post, camp, and station repair in- 
stallations. By decentralizing supervision 
to these offices, the OQMG made certain 
that standards of repair, classification, 
and procedures for shop operation estab- 
lished by it were properly carried out. 49 

By mid- 1943 the repair shop system had 
thus been expanded to take care of the tre- 
mendous volume of clothing and equip- 
ment that needed repair. It consisted of 
reclamation shops at posts, camps, and 
stations, engaged primarily in repairing 
articles for return to the original user or 
the using organization, and, to a limited 
extent, in making minor repairs in quan- 
tities that could be issued locally at the 
post. Regional repair shops, established 
within the service commands, repaired for 
return to stock at the nearest distributing 
depot, while repair subdepots handled any 
excesses that could not be repaired at other 
shops. In addition, there were a number of 
repair shops at Quartermaster depots and 
Quartermaster sections of ASF depots that 
were engaged in the maintenance of spe- 
cific items. For example, it was decided 
early that while tentage issued to organ- 

47 Ltr, Col Thomas E. Whitehead, OQMG, to CG 
SOS, 18 Feb 43, sub: Allotment of Offs. 

48 (1) Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 24 Sep 43, no 
sub. (2) [1st Ind], Col Hamilton, OQMG, to Hq ASF, 
21 Jun 44. For a detailed account, see C. Gregory 
Compton, History of the Quartermaster Repair Sub- 
Depot (hist monograph, CFQMD. Jul 45), Hist Br, 

40 (1) OQMG Cir41, 14 Aug 44, sub: Establish- 
ment of Fid Reclm Offices. (2) OQMG Cir 54, 25 Sep 
44, sub: Establishment of Fid Maint Offices. 



izations would be repaired by reclamation 
shops and by means of local contract when 
necessary, tentage repair shops at the 
Philadelphia and Jeffersonville Quarter- 
master Depots would continue to repair 
tentage that could not be handled by these 
means and to take care of all tentage is- 
sued for maneuvers. 50 Similarly, band in- 
struments were repaired at designated 
depots, as were typewriters and other of- 
fice equipment. In 1944 a program was 
initiated to establish a base maintenance 
shop at the Jeffersonville Depot to handle 
fifth echelon maintenance and reclama- 
tion on all materials-handling equipment 
within the zone of interior, 31 while another 
base shop was established at Camp Lee to 
recondition all Quartermaster special-pur- 
pose and mobile equipment. 52 

Combined Shops 

In the fall of 1943 a number of clothing 
and equipment repair shops became parts 
of combined shops that were established 
in the service commands. This develop- 
ment grew out of action taken by the 
Maintenance Division, ASF, to integrate 
maintenance activities. When the division 
was established in April, it found that over 
650 repair shops were being operated by 
the technical services for the repair of 
Army equipment. It concluded that this 
wholesale establishment of repair facilities 
throughout the zone of interior needed a 
co-ordinated system of centralized oper- 
ation. The division immediately prohib- 
ited the activation of any new shops with- 
out the prior authorization of the Com- 
manding General, ASF, and required full 
justification for expansion of any existing 
shops. 53 

The Maintenance Division then sought 
to determine whether this large number of 

shops was necessary and ended by for- 
mulating a plan for consolidating repair 
facilities in the zone of interior that broke 
down technical service differentiations in 
favor of a functional shop organization. 
The plan provided for a combined shop — 
consisting of an automotive shop, an ar- 
mament and instrument shop, a clothing 
and equipment shop, an electrical equip- 
ment shop, a machine shop, and a paint 
shop — co-ordinated under the supervision 
of a maintenance shop officer for oper- 
ation, to receive, inspect, and repair all 
Army materiel of all technical services. 
This combined shop, the ASF urged, 
would offer "unification of command, the 
interchangeability of skilled and versatile 
personnel, the supply of replacement parts 
through controlled supply point and the 
uninterrupted control of the entire activity 
by a central office." 54 Tried out first at 
Fort Knox in July, the plan was then sent 
to the commanding generals of the service 
commands in September with instructions 
to put it into effect as expeditiously as pos- 
sible. 55 Later it was extended to integrate 
maintenance activities at ASF depots and 
ports of embarkation. 

The plan was not received enthusiasti- 

50 Chief of Sup Div to Chief of Depot Div, OQMG, 
20 Oct 41, sub: Policy Re Salv of Tents. 

51 In the over-all maintenance plan for the zone of 
interior, all using organizations performed first and 
second echelon maintenance on equipment assigned 
to them; service command shops performed third and 
fourth echelon repairs on equipment assigned to using 
organizations; and technical service shops performed 
fifth echelon maintenance. 

" (1) OQMG Daily Activity Rpt, 1 1 Jan 44. (2) 
Q_M Training Service Journal, 2 Jun 44. . 

5:1 Ltr, Dir of Opns, ASF, to TQ_MG, 23 Jul 43, sub: 
Establishment of New Maint Shops. 

~' 4 Memo, Dir of Opns, ASF, for TQMG et al., 31 
Jul 43, sub: Combined Shops at Posts, Camps, and 

"AGO Memo W210-25-43, 7 Sep 43, sub: In- 
tegration of Maint Activities at Posts, Camps, and 



cally by either the technical services or the 
service commands. Until it was rescinded 
in July 1945, it met with considerable re- 
sentment and numerous objections. The 
technical services felt that since they were 
responsible for the development and pro- 
curement of designated equipment and 
the supply of spare parts for it, they should 
also be charged with its maintenance. 
They predicted that the integrated shop 
plan, under which one technical service 
officer was responsible for directing the 
maintenance functions of the other tech- 
nical services, would result in lowering the 
standards and quality of workmanship. At 
the end of the war, however, the Mainte- 
nance Division, ASF, sweepingly conclud- 
ed that "all these expectations proved to 
be erroneous predictions." 5 fi Since the 
heaviest maintenance loads were handled 
during the war through integrated main- 
tenance operations, it adjudged the plan 
satisfactory. Actually, the combined shop 
plan was not the complete success claimed 
by the Maintenance Division, ASF. 

On the other hand, the plan was not the 
complete failure claimed by the OQMG. 
Possibly it might have been more success- 
ful had the technical services generally 
been more receptive to it. At any rate, 
Quartermaster objections to the plan were 
not dissipated even after the war was over. 
The attitude of maintenance personnel 
was summarized in the following com- 

None of the shops were successful and 
were, to an experienced supervisor inade- 
quate, confused, and required to operate 
under quickly conceived staff policies, plan- 
ning and with arbitrary restrictions. The 
shops were unwieldy, over-manned, and in- 
adequately supplied and generally lacking in 
the required skills, in space and implementa- 
tion. Itwas impossible to find commissioned 
management personnel with the required ad- 

ministrative strength to properly co-ordinate 
this type of shop. Thus the combined shops 
were wasteful with, respect to supplies, and 
with respect to the return to serviceability of 
the various items repaired, against the over- 
all expenditures, and thus failed to fulfill the 
mission intended. 57 

The lack of sufficient facilities and the fact 
that the technical service controlling the 
operation of a combined shop inevitably 
secured preference for the repair of its 
equipment entailed consequences that 
were apparent long after the war ended. It 
was only in the postwar years that the 
backlog of unserviceable Quartermaster 
items — refrigeration equipment, furniture, 
and typewriters — "generated during 
World War II, which could not be main- 
tained in combined shops, were finally re- 
paired in Quartermaster depot mainte- 
nance shops and returned to stock." ss 

Return of Unserviceable Materiel to 
Supply Channels 

Property Exchanges and Turn-Ins 

At the beginning of the emergency there 
was no elaborate, restrictive procedure in 
use for the disposition of clothing and 
equipage comparable to that applied to 
most classes of nonexpendable Army sup- 
plies. As a matter of fact, under the money 
allowance system there was no particular 
inducement for the enlisted man to seek 
unnecessary replacements, since such ac- 
tion led to additional charges against his 
allowance. In the years following World 
War I, therefore, clothing issued on the 
money allowance was turned in to salvage 

56 Hist Rpt, Maintenance Problems, p. 133. 

57 Maint Br, Fid Sv Div, to Ping Br, Mil Ping Div, 
OQMG, 17 Jan 51, sub: Staff Study: Combined and 
Consolidated Shop Management. 

58 Ibid. 



by essentially the same method as that 
provided for expendable articles, that is, 
with a list and simple certificate of the or- 
ganization commander to the effect that 
the unserviceable condition of articles was 
due to fair wear and tear. 59 

Problems related to the disposal of the 
clothing that was turned in were respon- 
sible for certain restrictions in procedure. 
Provisions were inserted in the regulations 
to insure the maintenance of accountabil- 
ity in the process of turning in to the post 
quartermaster serviceable articles that had 
been issued on the money allowance. Pro- 
vision was also made for inspection of 
worn-out clothing by a commissioned of- 
ficer before credit was allowed on the 
clothing account, and by a disinterested 
officer after its receipt in salvage. More- 
over, the requirement that property be 
marked and mutilated to preclude various 
improper practices applied especially to 
clothing. These provisions, only slightly 
changed, were retained even after the sus- 
pension of money accounts in 1940 as a 
relatively convenient means of controlling 

As in the case of the regular survey and 
inspection procedures, the advent of the 
emergency made proper technical control 
of property disposition the primary aim to 
be achieved by inspection of property by 
officers. Considerable responsibility for di- 
recting the flow of unserviceable property 
through repair and other processes was 
soon given to a disinterested officer, ap- 
pointed by the local commanding officer. 
He inspected and classified clothing as 
reparable or nonreparable and furnished 
the quartermaster with a certificate cover- 
ing nonreparable clothing worn out 
through fair wear and tear. The latter was 
disposed of in salvage; the reparable cloth- 
ing was renovated and prepared for 

reissue. 60 Insofar as it went, this function 
was identical with that later charged to 
the classification officer. 

In the summer of 1942 a new basic pro- 
cedure was installed. Except for items 
definitely intended for repair and return 
to the original wearer, all unserviceable 
clothing and equipage was turned in to 
the post quartermaster through a newly 
designated classification officer. 61 The post 
quartermaster then issued other items in 
exchange 62 for those that had become un- 
serviceable through fair wear and tear. 63 
The classification officer classified all items 
as reparable or irreparable, with the ex- 
ception of certain technical items — band 
instruments, typewriters, 55-gallon drums, 
and M1937 field ranges — for which spe- 
cial disposition instructions were issued. 84 
Irreparable items were turned in to sal- 
vage; reparable items, except shoes, which 
were sent to the rebuilding factories, were 
repaired in the clothing and equipment 
repair shops or by such other means as the 
service command quartermaster directed. 

flB AR 30-2145, par. 4c. 
fi0 WD Cir97, 7 Sep 40. 

fil (1) WD Cir 185, 12 Jun 42. (2) AR 615-40, par. 
10c, 1 Sep 42. 

62 The practice of direct exchange was later discon- 
tinued, and a simplified turn-in procedure was made 
entirely separate from that of replacement issues. (1) 
TM 38-403, par. 48, 25 Aug 44, sub: Station Sup 
Procedure. (2) [1st Ind], Dir of Control to Dir of Sup, 
ASF, 4 Aug 44. 

63 Clothing and equipage rendered unserviceable 
by means other than fair wear and tear had, of course, 
to be acted on by survey as in the cast of other classes 
of equipment. The classification officer was originally 
authorized to direct that surveys be made on items 
that in his opinion were not worn out by fair wear 
and tear. Later he was given the powers of a survey- 
ing officer (AR 615-40, par. 14b, 24 Apr 43). These 
powers were subsequently adjusted to recognize 
command responsibility for turn-ins. 

84 (1) WD Pamphlet 38-1, 1 Mar 43, sub: SOP for 
Disp of Unserviceable Prop. (2) WD SB 10-156,31 
Oct 44, sub: Return of Unserviceable QM Prop to 
Sup Channels. 



It was the primary mission of these 
shops to repair clothing for return to the 
original wearer. In time, they were also 
authorized to make minor repairs in quan- 
tities that could be utilized at the post as 
Class B (used) items. Since storage facil- 
ities were not available at clothing and 
equipment repair shops, such Class B 
items were promptly transferred to the 
post property officer for inclusion in sta- 
tion stock. He assumed accountability for 
them and reissued these items in exchange 
for unserviceable clothing and equipment. 
If, owing to changes in troop strength, 
clothing and equipment in stock at sta- 
tions accumulated in excess of the amount 
that could be utilized by the local garri- 
son, the quantities and the nature of this 
excess were reported to the proper distrib- 
uting depot for disposition instructions. 
When a Class X category (reparable but 
not suitable for issue as Class B) was later 
established, such items were also trans- 
ferred to the post property officer, but they 
were issued without accountability. 95 

As the facilities of the clothing and 
equipment repair shops became taxed to 
their utmost, a maintenance policy was 
formulated that permitted regional and 
central shops to repair items beyond the 
capacity of the local shops to handle. Such 
unserviceable property was shipped by the 
supply officer to the next higher repair 
echelon. Each echelon operated under 
standing operating procedures prescribed 
by The Quartermaster General." 8 Prop- 
erty repaired at a regional repair shop was 
returned to stock at the nearest distribut- 
ing depot, except that Class X clothing 
was disposed of by the shop to troops in 
the area served by it as directed by the 
commander. By the fall of 1944 provision 
had been made for automatic shipment of 
property repaired at regional shops to the 
Quartermaster depot or Quartermaster 

supply section of an ASF depot normally 
supplying the area in which the shop was 
located. Property repaired at Quartermas- 
ter repair subdepots was shipped to the 
parent depot, although the latter might, 
prior to shipment, give instructions for 
routing to alternate storage points. S7 

Separation of Classification and 
Shop Activities 

Unlike the practice applying to Army 
property generally, the process of initial 
screening of unserviceable articles of cloth- 
ing and equipage was made separate from 
that of classification and disposition of re- 
paired articles, and was placed in the 
hands of an agency potentially independ- 
ent of repair echelons. The function of 
classification and disposition of repaired 
articles, which was comparatively tech- 
nical and involved the application of im- 
portant standards of serviceability that 
were constantly being refined, was as- 
signed to repair shops. Classification offi- 
cers in various localities acted without 
authorization, however, to classify gar- 
ments for issue prior to their submission to 
a shop for repair, a practice not firmly 
controlled for many months. 68 Until early 
in 1944 the association of classification of- 
ficers with repair shops was generally very 
close, 69 but at that time the classification 

65 (1) AR 615-40, par. 9, 1 S ep 42. (2) Ib id., pars. 
16, 17, 24 Apr 43. (3) See below , | pp. 56-58. | 

6 " (1) WD Cir 75, Sec. II, 16 Mar 43, sub: Disp of 
Unserviceable Prop. (2) WD Cir 7, 5 Jan 44, sub: 
Repl for and Disp of Unserviceable Prop. 

67 WD SB 10-156, 31 Oct 44, sub: Return of Un- 
serviceable QM Prop to Sup Channels. 

68 (1) Ltr, Col Falkenau to All SvCs, 14 Dec 42, 
sub: Class B and X Clo. (2) Change 4 to AR 615-40, 
29 Jan 44. 

69 (1) Originally regulations required that the clas- 
sification officer be a Quartermaster officer of suitable 
grade or experience. At posts, camps, and stations 
where Quartermaster repair shops were established, 
the station commander was required to appoint to the 



position was made entirely independent, 
and any officer associated with shop or 
maintenance activities could not be as- 
signed to the position. 70 

This step was taken primarily to avoid 
impeding the operations of shops unneces- 
sarily with segregation and salvage func- 
tions, and especially to avoid the expense 
and congestion that would result from 
hauling nonreparable property to and 
from shops. 71 A considerable amount of 
segregation and salvage activities was nec- 
essarily carried on in shops, particularly in 
subdepots processing property returned 
from overseas. Failure of local classifica- 
tion officers to segregate articles properly 
or in accordance with shop standards re- 
mained a source of criticism and of some 
disagreement between shops and local 
supply officers. The move to separate the 
classification position from shop activities 
was also influenced by the emphasis being 
placed upon command responsibility for 
conservation activities in all units. At the 
same time, station supply procedure was 
being changed to require classification of- 
ficers to accept property turned in by troop 
units regardless of its condition. 72 

The establishment of a separate local 
organization for segregation and classifica- 
tion of unserviceable property inevitably 
raised the question of the qualifications of 
individuals handling this function. 73 For 
some time the classification function was 
taken rather lightly by station com- 
manders, and transient officers were fre- 
quently assigned to that duty. As corn- 
classification position the officer in charge of the local 
shop, the salvage officer, or an assistant of one of the 
foregoing officers, unless a Quartermaster officer was 
especially appointed to devote his entire time to the 
duty. WD Cir 185, 12Jun 42. (2) Later the choice of 
appointments at stations where repair shops were lo- 
cated was limited to a representative of the repair 
shop or a specially appointed full-time officer, with 
the latter operating under the direction of the repair 
shop officer. AR 615-40, par 14, 24 Apr 43- 

mand responsibility was stressed and 
special training programs were developed, 
the local classification officer emerged as a 
control point for the disposition and utili- 
zation of clothing and individual equip- 
ment. He was given authority not only to 
inspect and segregate articles but also to 
classify all clothing and equipment turned 
in or to supervise these operations. 74 As a 
result, the classification officer assumed 
important responsibilities in the Quarter- 
master conservation program. Moreover, 

7U (1) Change 4 to AR 615-40, 29 Jan 44. (2) At this 
time it was also directed that classification officers act 
only upon Quartermaster items of clothing and 
equipage listed in AR 30-3000, or on similar articles. 
Some classification officers had been interpreting their 
authority as covering all items of individual equip- 
ment and even articles from other services that were 
submitted to Quartermaster repair shops. See AGO 
Memo S30- 10-43, 11 Mar 43, sub: Authority of C&E 
Classification Offs. 

71 Ltr, TQMG to CG Seventh SvC, 29 Aug 44, sub: 
Revision of AR 615-40. 

'-'(1) Chief of Stock Control Br, S&D Div, to 
DQMG for Sup Ping and Opns, 26 Aug 44, sub: Pro- 
posed Revision of AR 615-40. (2) Memo. DQMG for 
Sup Ping and Opns for CG ASF, 29 Aug 44, same sub. 

73 By this time various usages of the word "classifi- 
cation" were causing confusion. In some cases, classi- 
fication was used to mean separation of serviceable 
from unserviceable equipment; in others, separation 
of reparable from nonreparable equipment; and in 
still other cases, it meant the determination of the de- 
gree of serviceability. In addition, the word "segrega- 
tion" was used interchangeably with the word "classi- 
fication" to convey one or more of the above mean- 
ings. It was not until early in 1945 that these terms 
were clearly defined so that segregation meant "sort- 
ing garments as requiring repair, not requiring repair, 
or irreparable," while classification meant the deter- 
mination of "the class (CS, B or X) of used items of 
clothing and equipment in accordance with pre- 
scribed standards." (1) AR 615-40, par. 29b, 1 Feb 
45. (2) Extracts of Mins of Sixth Semi-^Annual SvC 
Conf, 1-3 Feb 45, p. Bl. 

74 AR 615-40 par. 29, 1 Feb 45. After items had 
been sent to shops for repair, they could be returned 
to the classification officer for classification or they 
could be classified in shops. In the latter case, this 
activity was under the technical supervision of the 
classification officer. Where possible, depending upon 
physical facilities, all segregation, classification, and 
sizing activities were to be centralized in the classifi- 
cation warehouse. 



the expansion of his duties reflected the in- 
creasing attention being given to the in- 
terrelation of repair, classification, and 
salvage standards and the need for some 
agency to co-ordinate the development of 
these standards in operation. 

Classification and Serviceability 

Prescribed standards for the classifica- 
tion of used and reclaimed articles became 
indispensable guides for the activities of 
the expanded classification organization, 
as well as for shops and other agencies par- 
ticipating in or actually handling this 
function. From the beginning the stand- 
ards of serviceability that were estab- 
lished affected the acceptability to troop 
units of renovated clothing, and therefore 
in large measure the conservation of these 
articles. The early criticism of established 
conservation policies and the reluctance of 
troop commanders to comply with the 
regulations on priority issue of renovated 
articles resulted partly from the total ab- 
sence of standards to govern the issue of 
these articles. 

Until some time after Pearl Harbor, 
regulations merely directed the classifica- 
tion of property as new (Class A) and used 
(Class B) and enunciated the principle of 
priority in issue. The quality of renovated 
articles available for issue was controlled 
almost entirely by repair shops. For a time 
after the beginning of the emergency, 
shortages of equipment even intensified 
the problem of Class B issues, since, as a 
result, repairs made were more extensive 
and appearance of the renovated articles 
that were issued was fully subordinated to 

The OQMG Salvage Branch, recogniz- 
ing the challenge to management and the 

need to improve this system, reaffirmed its 
policy, which had been announced earlier, 
of requiring the highest standards of work- 
manship. 75 Attainment of this objective 
was conditioned by many operating diffi- 
culties and was especially dependent upon 
a degree of standardization in shop opera- 
tions that was most difficult to achieve in 
the case of clothing repairs and virtually 
impossible, generally, until repairs for 
stock were centralized. In the meantime, 
the quality of the output of the shops 
varied greatly, and many shops returned 
inferior articles to troop units or to stock. 

It soon became clear that control of 
shop repair methods was by no means 
enough. When the criteria, on the basis of 
which worn or damaged items were se- 
lected for repair, were broadened, it be- 
came much more difficult to produce in 
the shops a uniform quality in articles to 
be issued for all purposes. More exact clas- 
sification of the produce of shops and more 
realistic policies for the utilization of this 
produce were needed. When these were 
established, shop output and methods 
could be planned systematically. 

Establishment of Class X 

As originally conceived, repair of cloth- 
ing was simply confined to repairs for re- 
turn to the original wearer and repairs for 
return to stock. Except in the case of work 
clothing, where surface darning was per- 
mitted, repairs were limited to those that 
would not detract unduly from the ap- 
pearance of the garment. Since at times 
the rapid expansion of the Army out- 
stripped the production of clothing, the 
OQMG had to take a broader attitude 

75 (1) Min of Salv and Reclm Conf, pp. 25-26. (2) 
Col Falkenau to C&E Br, OQMG, 24 Jun 41, sub: 
Establishment of C&E Repair Shops. 



with regard to the type and extent of re- 
pairs permitted in order to conserve and 
use garments then being discarded in sal- 
vage under existing standards. This move- 
ment for refinement of standards devel- 
oped immediately out of the desire to find 
some way of avoiding the use of new 
clothing in training activities, where it was 
subjected to excessive wear and tear. To 
prolong the wear of uniforms, the War De- 
partment at first instructed troop com- 
manders to use fatigue clothing for drill, 
work, and for all duties where the wearing 
of the uniform was not necessary. 76 

Various alternatives were proposed for 
the further differentiation of issues, and in 
August 1942 the OQMG established an 
additional classification for repaired cloth- 
ing. 77 Known as Class X, this category was 
defined simply as "clothing and equipage 
which is reparable but not suitable for 
issue as class B." 78 It was issued without 
charge to authorized allowances and with- 
out accountability for use in special field 
exercises, maneuvers, landing operations, 
or other training, and for such fatigue 
duties as were destructive to clothing and 
equipment. The War Department directed 
that Class X clothing be repaired repeat- 
edly until beyond serviceability, the mate- 
rials required for its renovation to be se- 
cured where practicable from salvaged 
garments. To prevent misuse by exchange 
or turn-in, all such garments were to be 
marked with the letter "X" in nonremov- 
able ink in places not in evidence when 

The savings accomplished through issue 
of worn clothing for these purposes were 
incalculable, despite early difficulties in 
distributing Class X clothing and in fa- 
miliarizing troops with its use. Conversely, 
however, as turn-ins and accumulations of 
renovated property increased, a need de- 

veloped for bringing the use of this cate- 
gory of articles under control. With basic 
allowances of clothing and equipage re- 
duced, the availability of a special form of 
gratuitous issue without accountability 
and without allowances being affected was 
a source of temptation to many com- 
manders. More serious than excessive use 
of such special issues was a general trend 
toward misclassification that resulted 
from placing large quantities of high-qual- 
ity garments in Class. X. Reports from 
service commands in 1943 particularly re- 
vealed misuse of Class X issues in this 
way. 79 This practice resulted partly from 
the general difficulty experienced in estab- 
lishing efficient classification activities at 
stations, and particularly from the classifi- 
cation of garments by inexperienced per- 
sonnel outside local repair shops and sub- 

For many months stocks of Class X 
clothing remained inadequate for Army 
needs. Eventually they accumulated until 
the distribution and utilization of these 
garments caused concern. Quartermaster 
depots were then permitted to establish 
stock levels for Class X clothing in order to 
meet sudden demands from the Interna- 
tional Division, ASF. Co-ordination be- 
tween the depots and the service com- 

:li WDCir 257, Sec. IV, 3 1 Jul 42, sub: Conserv of 
Wool and Cotton Uniform Clo. 

77 (1) Ltr, Hq First SvC to TQMG, 23 Jul 42, sub: 
Classification of Reclaimed C&E. (2) C&E Br to Salv 
and SurplusProp Br, OQMG, 3 1 Jul 42, same sub. (3) 
Salv and Surplus Prop Br to C&E Br, OQMG, 5 Aug 
42. same sub. 

WD Cir 287, Sec. VI, 27 Aug 42, sub: Instruc- 
tions Governing Exchange of Class C and Class D 

''' (1) Memo, Col George W. Cocheu, OQMG, for 
Dir of Control Div, ASF, 29 May 43, sub: Erroneous 
Classification of Clo. (2) Ltr, Col Falkenau, OQMG, 
to CG Second SvC, 23 Jun 43, same sub. (3) Memo, 
Falkenau for Col Robert H. Fletcher, IGD, 6 Jul 43, 
same sub. 



mands also enabled the reclamation shops 
to curtail their repairs of Class X clothing 
when excesses of these items existed. The 
OQMG found a convenient outlet for ex- 
cesses through issues to prisoners of war 
and for overseas relief. 

Class CS ( Combat Serviceable ) 

Until the impact of accumulations of 
renovated stocks forced attention to fur- 
ther differentiation of issues, particularly 
with reference to issues to troops going 
overseas, instructions for classification of 
clothing and equipage remained relatively 
general. As a result of reports of misclas- 
sification and continued complaints from 
commanders receiving inferior Class B is- 
sues, the Salvage Branch formulated ten- 
tative instructions for the classification of 
clothing in the spring of 1943. 80 These in- 
structions emphasized that Class B gar- 
ments should be serviceable in point of 
wear, in complete state of repair, clean, 
with no noticeable spots of paint or grease, 
approximately of the original shade, not 
darned or patched conspicuously except in 
the case of herringbone twill garments, 
and with buttons of matching shade and 
in correct position if these bore distinctive 
markings. Class X garments were required 
only to be serviceable, clean, and in com- 
plete state of repair. Further instructions 
limited the repair of Class X by cannibali- 
zation of parts from other garments. These 
instructions revealed an effort to maintain 
the high standards of repair that the Sal- 
vage Branch had established as its objec- 
tive at the beginning of the repair pro- 
gram. They made no attempt, however, to 
define the expression "serviceable in point 
of wear," a matter fundamental to all clas- 
sification and particularly to the equip- 

ment of embarking troops. The failure to 
clarify the expression "in complete state of 
repair," caused difficulties and variations 
in repair methods. The shortcomings of 
classification were increasingly apparent 
as troops were moved rapidly overseas in 
preparation for the invasion of Europe, 
and as used articles poured from the stag- 
ing areas and other sources. It became evi- 
dent that the problems of classification, 
serviceability, and standardization of re- 
pair methods would have to be treated as 
an integrated whole. 

During the summer of 1943 inspectors 
from the Maintenance Division, ASF, re- 
ported that unserviceable clothing and 
equipage were being accumulated in large 
quantities at repair shops, that troops de- 
parting for overseas were turning in large 
quantities of used clothing and equipage, 
that there was a lack of competent person- 
nel to identify, classify, and repair this 
materiel, and that more standardized 
methods of processing it were needed. 81 As 
troop units were alerted for overseas move- 
ment, particular difficulties were experi- 
enced with commanders who insisted on 
turning in combat serviceable equipment 
in order to replace it with new, or later 
model, items. In many cases such replace- 
ments were effected without an inspection 
to determine combat serviceability, de- 
spite regulations to the contrary. 82 This re- 
sulted in the publication of new instruc- 
tions that made such inspection manda- 
tory. The War Department further 
directed that nothing short of a complete 
physical inspection of each item would 
constitute compliance. The instructions 

80 Ltr, Falkenau to CG First SvC, 22 May 43, sub: 
Classes B and X Clo. 

81 Hist Rpt, Maintenance Problems, p. 88. 

82 WD Cir 267, Sec. II, 25 Oct 43, sub: C&E. 



prescribed the standards to be applied in 
determining the combat unserviceability 
of items of clothing and equipage. In gen- 
eral, clothing was to be inspected for holes, 
tears, frayed edges and facings, abrasion 
or thinness of fabric, and excessive fading 
and staining. 83 

In order that clothing and equipment 
might be conserved, the problem of classi- 
fication demanded a broader attack. 
Headquarters, ASF, directed The Quar- 
termaster General to prepare more de- 
tailed instructions for the classification of 
clothing and equipment and recom- 
mended more careful training of all clas- 
sification personnel. 84 The OQMG under- 
took a thorough study of the whole prob- 
lem, sending representatives to posts, 
camps, stations, and staging areas. Its 
efforts to correct the unsatisfactory stand- 
ards of classification resulted in the publi- 
cation of more precise rules for classifying 
and utilizing different classes of equip- 
ment. In addition to Classes A, B, and X, 
Class CS (combat serviceable) was added 
to identify property that was used but that 
was of such appearance and of such serv- 
iceability as to justify its issue to troops 
moving overseas and its shipment to over- 
seas theaters for issue. If, for example, the 
basic material of a garment was durable 
enough to provide 75 percent of the wear 
expectancy of a similar new item, and if 
the garment was completely repaired, had 
no stains, darns, or patches to cause an un- 
sightly appearance, and was not exces- 
sively faded, it was classed as combat serv- 
iceable. 85 However, the question of accept- 
ability to the troops remained. This was a 
never-ending problem, for, regardless of 
instructions, "the subject of combat serv- 
iceability is and always will be a matter of 
personal opinion." 86 

Training Program for Classification 

The publication of standards of service- 
ability for clothing and equipment was im- 
portant, but standards could not be put to 
effective use until personnel engaged in 
classification activities at repair shops, 
staging areas, personnel replacement de- 
pots, ports of embarkation, depots, and 
posts, camps, and stations were trained in 
the interpretation and uniform applica- 
tion of these standards. The OQMG in- 
augurated a program for such training 
late in June 1944 with a course given at 
Camp Lee for a small number of officers 
drawn from repair subdepots and depots. 
These officers were to become the nucleus 
for teaching other classification personnel. 
This original group was to prepare a plan 
that could be used within service com- 
mands and central and regional repair 
shops and that would provide for training 
of supervisory civilian personnel engaged 
in classification. Emphasis was to be 
placed upon the development of standard 

« WD Cir 277, 2 Nov 43, sub: C&E— Insp. in 

84 Memo, Dir of Sup, ASF, for TQMG, 22 Mar 44, 
sub: Classification of C&E. 

85 (1) 1st Ind. TQMG to CG ASF, 16 May 44, on 
memo cited n. 84. (2) WD Cir 296, 14 Jul 44, sub: Es- 
tablishment of Standards of Classification of C&E. 

Sfi (1) 2d Ind, Deputy Dir of Sup, ASF, to TQMG, 
15 Sep 44, on Ltr, Col C. W. Woodward, CO Char- 
lotte QMD, to OQMG, 4 Sep 44, sub: Equipping of 
Certain Units. (2) No matter how carefully the QMC 
defined its standards on clothing, there were bound 
to be differences of opinion. Until agreement was 
reached with the ground troops and the air troops 
who had to accept the garments, the problem re- 
mained. "You can classify a garment combat service- 
able, but if the man who has to take the garment 
doesn't agree, what's the use?" What was needed was 
a standard approved and accepted by all elements of 
the War Department. Extracts of Min of Sixth Semi- 
Annual SvC Conf, 1-3 Feb 45, p. A10. 



procedures for classification as well as 
illustrative material for inclusion in a 
manual. 87 

The second phase of the training pro- 
gram was initiated when these officers 
were assigned in groups of three to teach 
at three central repair shops operated by 
the Jersey City, Kansas City, and Califor- 
nia Quartermaster Depots. 8 * The instruc- 
tion was offered for the benefit of classifi- 
cation officers from the headquarters of 
the service commands, the AAF com- 
mands, and the ports of embarkation; 
from Quartermaster regional supply de- 
pots; from central repair shops and service 
command regional repair shops; and from 
those posts, camps, and stations where 
staging areas, personnel replacement de- 
pots, and aerial ports of embarkation were 
operated. The Quartermaster General 
had been made responsible for the train- 
ing of key personnel assigned to clothing 
and equipage classification duties at these 
installations. The commanders of such in- 
stallations were responsible for instructing 
all other personnel engaged in classifica- 
tion duties. 89 

The third phase of the training program 
rested with the headquarters of the service 
commands and of the AAF commands. 
When their representatives returned from 
attending the central repair shop course in 
classification, they in turn gave instruction 
in the classification of used clothing and 
equipage to post, camp, and station per- 
sonnel within their commands. 9 " 

In its program of training, the OQMG 
centered immediate attention upon the 
problem of classifying clothing. Equipage 
and general supplies also required repair, 
and by the fall of 1944 training had been 
extended to include instruction in the 
classification of these items. 91 

Improvement of Repair Shop Production 

From the beginning, the OQMG em- 
phasized the importance of capacity op- 
erations in Quartermaster repair shops. 
Until troops were sent overseas in large 
numbers, reducing the over-all troop 
strength in service commands and thus 
producing excess capacity in various cloth- 
ing and equipment repair shops, the im- 
mediate problem was the elimination of 
backlogs of repairs. These backlogs accu- 
mulated as a result of fluctuations in troop 
strength, personnel shortages, and other 
factors. As the facilities of the clothing and 
equipment repair shops became overtaxed, 
a system of transferring excess reparable 
equipment to the next higher echelon of 
repair was instituted. In turn, excesses be- 
yond the capacity of the regional shops to 
handle were shipped to repair subdepots. 92 

In the fall of 1944 this procedure was 
further clarified by directions that repara- 
ble equipment which had accumulated at 
a post, beyond the capacity of the cloth- 

81 Ltr, Gen Feldman, OQMG, to Dir of QM Bd, 
Camp Lee, Va. ( 6 Jun 44, sub: Tng Plan for Instruc- 
tion in Classification of Used C&E. 

88 Ltr, TAG to AAF Commands et al., 23 Jun 44, 
sub: Instruction in Classification of Used C&E. 

89 (1) WDCir 296, 14 Jul 44, sub: Establishment of 
Standards of Classification of C&E. (2) The Quarter- 
master General was also responsible for training clas- 
sification officers at Quartermaster depots and Quar- 
termaster sections of ASF depots, and, accordingly, 
instruction was provided at those installations. Ltr, 
Brig Gen Wilbur R. McReynolds, OQMG, to CO 
Atlanta ASFD eta!., 26 Jul 44, sub: Tng of Depot Pers 
in Classification. 

au See, for example, Ltr, Hq Eighth SvC to TQMG, 
14 Aug 44, sub: Conf on Classification of C&E. 

91 Ltr, Gen McReynolds, OQMG, to CG CFQMD, 
7 Sep 44, sub: Course in Classification of General Sup 

91 WD Cir 329, Sec. IV, 20 Dec 43, sub: C&E. 



ing and equipment repair shop to repair 
within sixty days, was to be reported to the 
commanding general of the service com- 
mand for redistribution to other facilities 
under his control. A sixty-day limit was 
also established for the shop production 
capacity of all repair installations under 
his control. Backlogs in excess of this 
capacity were reported to The Quarter- 
master General for shipment to central re- 
pair shops. In order to expedite the repair 
of items in short supply, The Quartermas- 
ter General might require service com- 
mands to report backlogs of such items 
amounting to less than sixty days' shop 
production capacity of all service com- 
mand repair installations. 93 

On the other hand, by the fall of 1944 
the sharp reductions in troop strength 
within certain service commands made ex- 
cess capacity available in clothing and 
equipment repair shops. It was therefore 
directed that when backlogs at such shops 
dropped below forty-five days' capacity, 
the commanding general of the service 
command was to be informed in order that 
he might allocate additional items to the 
shops for repair. Similarly, he advised The 
Quartermaster General when the backlog 
of all clothing and equipment repair in- 
stallations under his control fell below 
forty-five days' production capacity. 94 

To reduce the backlogs that accumu- 
lated rapidly in 1944, the service com- 
mands took prompt and energetic action. 
In addition to shipping excess repairs to 
central repair shops, 96 production in re- 
pair shops was increased by establishing 
second shifts when it was possible to em- 
ploy additional civilians. Furthermore, use 
was made of prisoners of war who were 
trained for repair shop work. It was possi- 
ble in some instances to increase machine 

capacity. Action was also taken to speed 
up classification by increasing both the 
number of shifts in operation and the 
number of personnel engaged in classify- 
ing unserviceable property. 96 

Production Scheduling 

A series of conferences conducted by the 
Maintenance Division, ASF, with repair 
shop personnel early in March 1944 de- 
veloped suggestions for improving produc- 
tion in repair shops and curtailing over-all 
procurement by establishing for each cen- 
tral repair shop production schedules of 
required clothing and equipment as set 
forth in the Army Supply Program. These 
facilities could then concentrate on their 
quotas in order to reduce over-all require- 
ments for designated items. 

The Salvage Branch, OQMG, took steps 
to make practical application of the sug- 
gestions offered by the repair subdepot 
personnel. It was anticipated that produc- 
tion scheduling, when fully effected, would 
permit a closer tie between repair activities 
and new procurements in the development 
of the Army Supply Program. The OQMG 
hoped to reduce new procurements of tex- 

33 WD Cir 411. Sec. I, 20 Oct 44, sub: C&E. 

5,4 (1) Ibid. (2) Ltr, Col William J. Gainey, OQMG, 
to CG Seventh SvC, 1 May 44, sub: Rpt of Insp of 
C&E Repair Shops. (3) Memo, Dir of Sup, ASF, for 
TQMG, 13Jun44, sub: Utilization of C&E Shops. 

95 The Fourth Service Command, for example, re- 
ported that during July and August it was shipping 
excess clothing and equipment repairs at the rate of 
two carloads of clothing per week to fifth echelon re- 
pair shops, and two carloads of canvas and webbing 
per month to the Memphis Repair Subdepot. 1st Ind, 
QM, Hq Fourth SvC, to TQMG, 8 Sep 44, on Ltr, 
TQMG to CG Fourth SvC, 4 Sep 44, sub: Backlog of 

s6 {\)Ibid. (2) Ltr, TQMG to CG Eighth SvC, 4 
Sep 44. sub: Backlog of C&E, and 1st Ind, Hq Eighth 
SvC to TQMG, 12 Sep 44. 



tile items during the next twelve months 
by about $200,000,000 through the use of 
items returned by repair installations to 
stock for reissue. 97 Production schedules 
that included the major items processed 
by depots were forwarded to repair subde- 
pots. The latter were advised each month 
with regard to items on which to concen- 
trate their efforts. 98 

By the spring of 1944 the Quartermas- 
ter repair activities, carried on in its sub- 
depots, service command regional shops, 
and clothing and equipment sections of 
combined maintenance shops, had reached 
such proportions that the production of 
Class B items had to be considered in the 
preparation of the Quartermaster section 
of the Army Supply Program. The OQMG 
complained, however, that it was receiv- 
ing inadequate data for the purpose of es- 
timating requirements. It indicated that 
many of the figures reported for repairs on 
hand, for example, included only materiel 
physically located in the shop and gave no 
consideration to the backlog of reparable 
items held by the quartermasters at posts, 
camps, and stations. By way of illustrating 
the discrepancies that existed, the OQMG 
pointed out that Headquarters, Ninth 
Service Command, reported that as of 29 
February 1944 there were 2,678,743 
pieces of clothing and equipment awaiting 
repair in that service command. On the 
other hand, the figures obtained by con- 
solidating reports sent in to the office from 
individual stations showed a backlog of 
517,433 pieces. Such data were useless in 
determining requirements, and more ade- 
quate reports were needed." 

Meanwhile the Maintenance Division, 
ASF, was at work upon the general prob- 
lem of control reports.. By July the Supply 
Control System had replaced the Army 
Supply Program, and, since it had ac- 

quired responsibility under this system for 
estimating the amounts of materiel to be 
returned to stock through repair channels, 
the division was more than ever concerned 
with the development of an adequate sys- 
tem of reports. 

Estimating the amounts of materiel that 
would be reclaimed in Quartermaster re- 
pair facilities in turn necessitated the 
preparation of forecasts of the quantities 
that would be repaired and returned to 
stock. These quotas for repairing items for 
return to stock were prepared for Quarter- 
master repair installations on the basis of 
information developed by field reclama- 
tion offices, data assembled on capacities, 
schedules, work loads, and output of 
shops, machine capacities, and the quan- 
tities of articles that would become avail- 
able for repair. These quantities consti- 
tuted a backlog for production and con- 
sisted of the items on hand in repair shops, 
those awaiting repair but not yet located 
at the shops, and those, not yet classified, 
which it was estimated would become 
available for repair. Based on the pre- 
scribed quotas established by the OQMG, 
the QMC took maximum credit in supply 
control for such repairs, thereby decreas- 
ing the amount of new procurement esti- 
mated to be necessary. 190 

97 Address, Maj Jacob Haas, OQMG, at Conf of 
Key Pers, Kansas City QM Repair Subdepot, 1 Sep 

88 See, for example, Ltr, Col Hamilton, OQMG, to 
CG Calif QM Repair Subdepot, 29 Aug 44, sub: Pro- 
duction Schedules for Sep; Oct, Nov, and Dec 44. 

H3 Memo, Col Georges F. Doriot, OQMG, for CG 
ASF, 3 Apr 44, sub: Relation of Repair Activities and 
the ASP, 

>°° (1) Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 15 May 45, 
sub: ASF Cir 156, 1 May 45. (2) Memo, Dir of Sup, 
ASF, for TQMG et al., 2 Nov 44, sub: Returned Stock 
Included in Sup Control Rpts. (3) The responsibility 
for preparing these estimates was assigned to the 
Service Installations Division by OQMG OO 25-115, 
26 Jan 45. 



Production- Line Method of Repair 

The production-line method of repair 
had been adopted at repair subdepots 
when they were established by the OQMG 
early in 1943 as a means of conserving 
critical manpower and increasing the 
amount of work per employee. At a con- 
ference in May 1944, commanding officers 
of the subdepots suggested that key per- 
sonnel from both regional and station 
clothing and equipment repair shops be 
sent to the central repair shops to study 
their repair methods. The ultimate objec- 
tive was to extend, where practicable, the 
production-line method of repair as 
another means of improving production. 
The OQMG initiated the program by 
sending technically qualified personnel to 
assist the regional repair shops in install- 
ing this method of operation. By the first 
week in June, it had completed such 
action in the First and Ninth Service 
Commands. 101 

In the meantime the Maintenance Divi- 
sion, ASF, directed the OQMG to widen 
the application of the production-line 
method of operation by developing a plan 
for training key civilian personnel of the 
clothing and equipment repair shops in its 
use. 102 The OQMG prepared and put into 
operation by September a training pro- 
gram to acquaint both operating and 
training personnel with the standard of 
procedures for the repair of clothing and 
equipment, to give them additional infor- 
mation on classification, and to assist them 
in developing a sound training program so 
that the individual worker at each repair 
installation might be thoroughly trained 
in the proper performance of his job. 
"Quality control of the training program 
in each repair installation" constituted the 
final phase of this program and insured by 

continuous follow-up that proper training 
methods had been instituted. 103 

Specialized Shops 

Improving classification, decreasing 
backlogs, and applying production-line 
repair methods as widely as possible were 
all a part of the effort being made during 
1944 to increase the production rate of re- 
paired items and return them quickly to 
supply channels for further use. While im- 
provements were made, inspections and 
investigations disclosed that procedures 
being followed by the technical services in 
repairing equipment for return to stock 
lacked systematic control and entailed a 
large amount of duplication in the work 
performed by repair shops. This duplica- 
tion had arisen from the changed condi- 
tions developing in the zone of interior. As 
military organizations and personnel 
moved to overseas theaters in 1944, huge 
amounts of materiel were turned in to sup- 
ply channels for repair. At the same time, 
the departure of the troops reduced the 
workload at clothing and equipment re- 
pair shops that repaired for return to the 
original user. As a result, these shops re- 
paired unserviceable materiel for return to 
stock, but since their facilities were not 
always adequate and their personnel were 
not thoroughly trained in procedures and 

101 (1) DQMG for Sup Ping to Dirof Sv Instls Div, 
OQMG, 15 May 44, sub: QM C&E Repair Sub- 
depots. (2) Col Hamilton to DQMG for Sup Ping, 
OQMG, 8 Jun 44, same sub. 

102 (1) Memo, Dir of Maint Div, ASF, for TQMG, 
20 May 44, sub: Tng of Key C&E Repair Pers. (2) 1st 
Ind, Col Hamilton, OQMG, to Hq ASF, 12 Jun 44, 
on above memo. 

103 (1) Memo, Gen Barnes, OQMG, for Maint Div, 
ASF, 3 1 Jul 44, sub: Tng Plan for Instruction of Key 
Pers. (2) Address, Maj Jacob Haas, OQMG, at Conf 
of Key Pers, Kansas City QM Repair Subdepot, 1 
Sep 44. 



methods, the repaired items returned to 
stock did not always meet established 
standards and the depots felt compelled to 
reinspect and reclassify the materiel sent 
to them before reissuing it. 

At the request of the Commanding 
General, ASF, and on the basis of experi- 
mental repair programs tried out in the 
Third and Fourth Service Commands, the 
Control Division, ASF, developed a pro- 
gram to expedite the return of materiel to 
supply channels. 104 The ASF proposed 
designating certain maintenance shops as 
specialized shops on the basis of selection 
by the chiefs of the technical services and 
the commanding generals of the service 
commands. These specialized shops, and 
no other station shops, were to repair for 
return to depot stock. They were to be re- 
sponsible for identifying, classifying, and 
repairing equipment as well as inspecting 
and packaging it prior to shipment to the 
depots. The inspection was to be per- 
formed by inspectors representing and re- 
sponsible to the chief of the technical serv- 
ice concerned, and acceptance by these in- 
spectors was to be final. The ASF main- 
tained that it had no intention of designat- 
ing specialized shops for repair of specific 
items for which adequate facilities already 

In addition, the ASF provided for the 
automatic evacuation of materiel, but this 
was soon found to be in conflict with other 
instructions governing the disposition of 
excess stocks. The confusion was elimi- 
nated the following month by new instruc- 
tions that met the objections voiced by the 
OQMG. 105 The OQMG had been dis- 
turbed by the procedure prescribing auto- 
matic shipment to the specialized shops of 
excess serviceable property on hand at sta- 
tions that did not constitute a standard 
pack or that had been removed from the 

original container. In the case of Quarter- 
master items, many of which would not 
normally be found at stations in standard 
packs, the shipment to specialized shops 
would be wasteful of transportation since 
the shops in many instances were far re- 
moved from the supply depot. The revised 
instructions provided that such serviceable 
property could be automatically shipped 
to the depot supplying the item to the post, 
camp, or station or to points designated by 
the chief of the technical service con- 
cerned. When doubt existed as to an 
item's serviceability, it was to be sent to 
the designated specialized shop. 106 

The Quartermaster General and the 
other technical service chiefs were called 
upon to designate specialized shops and to 
prepare plans for the organizations neces- 
sary to carry out the responsibilities as- 
signed to them under the new directive 
covering the ASF program. The OQMG 
felt that these responsibilities were identi- 
cal with those it had been discharging for 
the past year and no new organization was 
necessary for the purpose. It had devel- 
oped a system of automatic evacuation to 
specialized technical service shops and 
had published instructions in War Depart- 
ment Supply Bulletin 10-156 for auto- 
matic disposition of approximately 115 
items or categories of items of specialized 
types that lent themselves to production- 
line repair on a national scale. It had also 
established repair subdepots for quantity 
production of clothing and equipment 
items of types requiring less specialized 
techniques, but for which volume produc- 
tion was most economical. The OQMG 

r<K (1) ASF Cir '56, 1 May 45, sub: Mat. (2) Hist 
Rpt, Maintenance Problems, pp. 33-38. 

105 ASF Cir 234, Sec. I, 22 Jun 45, sub: Excess Sta- 
tion Stock. 

106 Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 15 May 45, sub: 
ASF Cir 156, 1 May 45. 



called attention to the fact that any system 
of specialized shops devised within the 
fourth echelon would have to give consid- 
eration to the continued operations of 
these repair subdepots, which employed 
over 8,000 people and had a production 
capacity of 4,000,000 garments per month. 
Furthermore, such shops would have to re- 
tain flexibility of operations in order to 
meet the changing demands of supply "as 
is evidenced by the concentration on 
woolen clothing during the short supply 
period last winter and the current concen- 
tration for maximum repair machine as- 
signment to the production of cotton khaki 
clothing." 107 The Quartermaster General 
designated these installations as specialized 
shops with the approval of Headquarters, 
ASF. 108 

Value of the Repair Program 

Reclamation was no minor activity in 
terms of the war effort. While complete 
statistics are not available for all repairs 
made by Quartermaster installations dur- 
ing the emergency and war periods, the 
tremendous growth in the value of the 
items repaired disclosed an activity of "big 
business" proportions. In the six-month 
period from July to December 1942, the 
total value of shoes and clothing, canvas 
and webbing, and the miscellaneous items 
repaired in shops at posts, camps, and sta- 
tions amounted to $22,2 13,000. For the 
year 1943 this had increased to $93,718,- 
000. 109 The total value of items repaired 
in Quartermaster fifth echelon mainte- 
nance during 1945 amounted to $161,- 
699,000. Clothing and textiles represented 
the largest part of the total value of items 
repaired, with petroleum containers and 
equipment, and metal and woodworking 
items constituting the second and third 
largest groups. 110 

Conservation of Food 

In the broad conservation program di- 
rected by the QMC, saving food was as 
important as repairing and reclaiming 
clothing and equipment, or using substi- 
tutes in lieu of critical raw materials in the 
development of military items. A plentiful 
food supply existed early in the emergency 
period, and the primary mission of the 
Subsistence Branch (later Division) then 
was not to save food but to feed the soldier. 
As the Army expanded and demands were 
made upon the United States to supply 
food to the occupied countries as well as to 
the Allied nations, the necessity to con- 
serve food grew increasingly important. 
With high prices and the introduction of 
rationing, many people became extremely 
critical of Army food practices, and sus- 
picions of food wastage were voiced more 
vigorously than suspicions of negligence in 
the use of any other item. 

While the Corps had always been 
aware of the importance of conserving 
food, the need was not so acute in peace 
as it became in war. It was possible for the 
Army to secure its subsistence through a 
thoroughly decentralized system of food 
procurement. Posts, camps, and stations 
operated on a garrison ration and found it 
convenient to purchase their perishable 
foods from local sources and to obtain 
their nonperishable foods from depots that 
bought and delivered them directly in 
regular quantities. The War Department 

107 (1) Ibid. (2) Memo, Brig Gen Alexander M. 
Owens, OQ.MG, for CG ASF, 5 May 45, sub: Ade- 
quate Backlog for Fifth Echelons. 

108 (1) Memo, Col Joseph H. Burgheim, OQJVIG, 
for CG ASF, 1 3 Jul 45, sub: ASF Cir 156,1 May 45. 
(2) 1st Ind, Hq ASF to TQMG, 18 Jul 45, on above 

109 Statistical Handbook of the QMC, 1943, p. 29. 

110 Statistical Yearbook of the QMC, 1945, p. 140. 



considered conservation a normal con- 
comitant of Army feeding, and there were 
various rules and regulations aimed at en- 
forcing moderation in the purchase and 
preparation of food. Responsibility for 
eliminating waste was vested in the com- 
manders of the corps areas. 

It was not until the summer of 1943 
that centralized control of food conserva- 
tion was established. In the meantime the 
rapid expansion of the Army after the pas- 
sage of the Selective Service Act and the 
impact of military procurement on the 
food supply of the country caused the War 
Department and the Q_MC to take steps to 
conserve food. In the spring of 1941 the 
War Department substituted the field ra- 
tion for the garrison ration, and the QMC, 
which procured all food for the Army, es- 
tablished a centralized system for food 
purchase and distribution. 111 Army units 
thereafter acquired their nonperishable 
foods through the three Quartermaster de- 
pots where this procurement was cen- 
tralized. They obtained their perishable 
foods by means of a market center system 
that the Corps established in March. By 
the end of 1941 some thirty Quartermas- 
ter market centers had been planned, or 
were already in operation on a small scale. 

These developments had broad implica- 
tions for conservation. For example, the 
Field Headquarters of the market center 
system, as the central purchasing agency 
for perishable foods, was in the best posi- 
tion to discover what perishables could 
and ought to be used at the posts, camps, 
and stations. Yet in the beginning, the 
market centers were hampered in procure- 
ment by the lack of uniformity in the 
amounts of perishable foods requisitioned 
by individual messes. This resulted from 
the fact that in the fall of 1941 menus were 
being prepared in each corps area and 

sent to the Subsistence Branch in the 
OQMG. 112 The menus showed great vari- 
ation in the amounts of food issued for 
each 100 men at different posts. For effec- 
tive conservation, menus at posts, camps, 
and stations had to be standardized in 
order that menu planning could be co- 
ordinated with procurement of perish- 
ables, large-scale carlot purchases could 
be arranged, and advantage could be 
taken of seasonal production and price 
differences. 113 

These ends were promoted by close co- 
operation between the market center sys- 
tem and the menu-planning section of the 
OQMG. The latter developed a master 
menu by means of which similar meals 
could be served to all Army organiza- 
tions. 114 The master menu was intended as 
a guide to bring about more uniformity in 
the amounts of food components issued per 
100 men, to demonstrate a menu that was 
adequate for good nutrition, to offer a pat- 
tern for conserving critical food items, and 
to suggest menus that did not include any 
food more times than the national supply 
would permit. 115 

Further advantages beneficial to the 
conservation program in general accrued 
from the establishment of the market cen- 

111 The field ration is an issue of food in kind, while 
the garrison ration is a monetary credit. See the dis- 
cussion of these rations in Risch, T he Quarterm aster 
Corps: Organization, Supply, and Services. \1. 174-751 

112 WD Cir 195, 18 Sep 41, sub: Sales Commis- 
saries, Fid Commissaries, and Rations. 

113 For a more detailed discussion see Herbert R. 
Rifkind, Fresh Foods for the Armed Forces: The Quarter- 
master Market Center System, 1941—48, QMC Historical 
Studies, 20 (Washington, 3951). 

111 The master menu, a monthly publication, con- 
tained a complete menu for each day of the month 
and a list of the items that comprised each menu. See 
Risch, The Quarter master Corps: Organization, Supply, 
and Services ,U^JZ3A] 

Rpt, ASF Food Sv Conf, 1 1-14 Aug 43, Chi- 
cago, 111., pp. 34-35, address by Miss Mary I. Bar- 
ber, OQMG food consultant. 



ter system. Large savings were effected in 
transportation, while the use of fresh fruits 
and vegetables, so desirable in the soldier's 
diet, reduced the quantity of canned goods 
required and thereby furthered the con- 
servation of tin. 

Soon after the United States entered the 
war, General Gregory declared that the 
use of the field ration by nearly all major 
Army units had not only proved econom- 
ical but had also simplified accounting 
procedure and the problem of post storage 
and issue. Furthermore, the system of food 
procurement, storage, and distribution 
that had been placed in operation was as- 
suring to all organizations a continuous 
supply of a "wide variety of fine quality 
food." 116 

On the other hand, he found the prep- 
aration of food and the supervision of mess 
operations unsatisfactory. Skillful prepara- 
tion of food that was palatable to the sol- 
dier as well as nutritious was even more 
important in the promotion of conserva- 
tion than centralized purchase of sub- 
sistence. This could be accomplished only 
by training competent cooks, bakers, mess 
sergeants, and mess officers. But there 
were not nearly enough trained mess per- 
sonnel early in 1941 to keep pace with the 
augmented requirements of the rapidly 
expanding Army. This was true even 
though training programs conducted in 
the nine corps area schools for bakers and 
cooks had been expanded by establishing 
some forty-nine subschools under their 
jurisdiction and curtailing the regular four 
months' course of instruction to two 
months' intensive training in an effort to 
furnish even partially trained personnel. 
The OQMG sought to provide technical 
assistance and co-ordination in the organ- 
ization, operation, and training activities 
of these schools and their subschools. 117 

Despite the steps taken, The Quarter- 
master General early in 1942 found that a 
great deal of food was being wasted either 
through lack of planning or because of im- 
proper preparation. Food was being pre- 
pared by partially trained cooks under the 
supervision of inexperienced mess ser- 
geants, and since the Army was increasing 
in strength this condition would only grow 
worse. Furthermore, under the stress of 
wartime expansion, organization com- 
manders could not devote time to mess 
supervision although they were charged 
with responsibility for it by regulations. 118 

The solution, proposed by The Quarter- 
master General in a staff study submitted 
to G-3 early in 1942, was "a system of 
supervision by trained personnel." This 
anticipated in many respects the later 
Food Service Program. His proposal em- 
phasized continuous training for cooks, 
mess sergeants, and mess officers within 
their own organizations, but it did not go 
as far as the later provision for centrally 
controlled training, subject to periodic in- 
vestigation. The plan called for the devel- 
opment of a heightened sense of respon- 
sibility — which became the basis of the 
Food Service Program — and aimed to 
create a regular source of information on 
the best methods of food preparation and 
to "assure continuous good mess operation 
whether the organization happens to be 
located in camp or in the field, in the Zone 
of the Interior or the Theater of Oper- 
ations." 119 

1,6 Memo, Gen Gregory for ACofS G-3, 24 Feb 42, 
sub: Tng and Supervision of Mess Pers. 

117 (1) Rogers W. Young, Inspection of Military Train- 
ing by The Quartermaster General, QMC Historical 
Stud ies, 15 (Wa shington, 1946), pp. 17-18. (2) See be- 
low, JchTvnTJ 

" J Merao, Gen Gregory for ACofS G-3, 24 Feb 42, 
sub: Tng and Supervision of Mess Pers. 
" H Ibid. 



No immediate action was taken by the 
General Staff to strengthen controls over 
food distribution and use. In the mean- 
time, The Quartermaster General was 
taking other steps designed to provide the 
necessary information for a food conserva- 
tion program. Late in December 1941 
General Gregory directed the Quarter- 
master Board to initiate a field study at 
Camp Lee to determine the adequacy of 
the authorized ration and the existence or 
nonexistence of food wastage. This study, 
begun in February 1942, was widened into 
a field survey at other posts and produced 
a vast amount of valuable information 
that enabled the Corps to save millions of 
pounds of food and to divert millions of 
dollars to other war uses. 120 

Investigation revealed that one fifth of 
the food prepared at the Quartermaster 
Replacement Training Center at Camp 
Lee, Va., was not consumed by the soldiers 
but was actually thrown into the garbage. 
The same tremendous wastage, resulting 
from four specific causes, was shown to 
exist at other posts. The first of these 
causes, and the most easily corrected, was 
absenteeism. In compliance with a War 
Department directive, one ration was 
drawn for each man appearing on the 
morning report of ration strength, even 
though he might be at home, on pass, eat- 
ing a meal in town, or absent from one or 
more meals for other reasons. 121 Because of 
the absence from table of what was esti- 
mated to be 13 percent of the reported 
number, much more food was ordered and 
prepared than there were men to eat it. In 
addition, the ration itself was found to be 
unduly large; soldiers' preferences were 
such that they would bypass unpopular 
items; and finally, mess management was 
far from being all it should have been. 

The first remedial action, devised to 

eliminate the effects of absenteeism, was a 
fundamental change in the basis of ration 
issue. After 1 February 1943 daily ration 
allowance returns were to be based on "the 
average number expected to be present for 
the three daily meals." It was recognized 
that more persons would be present for 
some meals than the number estimated, 
but "experience has proved that the diet 
will be adequate." 122 The responsibility 
of commanders for supervising the cook- 
ing, serving, and conserving of food for 
their commands was again emphasized. 

About the same time, the chiefs of the 
supply services and the commanding gen- 
erals of the service commands were di- 
rected to appoint mess supervisors at all 
posts, camps, and stations under their ju- 
risdiction. This marked a sharp change in 
policy. 123 Within the framework of decen- 
tralized administration, the War Depart- 
ment was taking steps to enforce conserva- 

During the first six months of 1943 the 
efforts made by the War Department to 
clarify and implement conservation meas- 
ures and make them more effective added 
up to a full-bodied but loosely controlled 
conservation program that laid the 
groundwork for the Food Service Program 
established in July. The measures taken 
included poster campaigns, educational 
courses, and lectures to sharpen under- 
standing of conservation objectives. Regu- 
lations revised distribution and accounting 
procedures and provided for turning in 

12(1 Rpt, Dir of QM Bd to TQMG, sub: on the 
Quartermaster Board, Camp Lee, Va., 1 Feb 42 to 30 
Jun 44, pp. 89-101. 

121 (1) WD Cir 195, 18 Sep 41, sub: Sales Commis- 
saries, Fid Commissaries, and Rations. (2) WD Cir 
297, 2 Sep 42, same sub. 

122 WD Cir 16, 1 1 Jan 43, sub: Revised Procedure 
for Distr and Accounting for Fid Rations. 

AGO Memo S30-3-43, 15 Jan 43, sub: Super- 
vision of Messes and Elimination of Waste. 



excess supplies and keeping spoilage at a 
minimum. New courses were added to 
those already given by the bakers' and 
cooks' schools. Master menus were revised 
to permit a more adroit use of leftovers. 
The Quartermaster Board continued its 
studies, and the first of a series of food con- 
servation conferences was held at Camp 
Lee in May 1943. Attended by officers 
from the bakers' and cooks' schools and 
representatives of the AAF, the AGF, and 
the OQMG, the conference covered all the 
problems of waste, its cause and control. 

As a result of the remedial steps taken, 
waste was considerably reduced, but some- 
thing was still lacking. As expressed by a 
representative of the Subsistence Branch, 
OQMG, "It was evident, that unless close 
supervision was introduced, our effort in 
conserving the food supply of the nation 
was inadequate." 124 The fullest conserva- 
tion, then, was dependent not so much on 
regulations as upon trained personnel 
adequately supervised and kept alive to 
the value of food-saving devices. 

The stepped- up tempo of conservation 
in the Army coincided with the increased 
civilian interest in food conservation re- 
sulting from developing food shortages. 
Rumors and accusations of waste aroused 
a noticeably adverse public reaction. The 
QMC was conscientious in trying to track 
down and ascertain the basis for these 
rumors, which reached a high point early 
in the spring of 1943. Investigations by the 
Inspector General's Department disclosed 
that there was a startling number of mis- 
conceptions and baseless rumors and that 
Army officials were far from willing to 
countenance wanton misuse of food sup- 
plies. The strong defense and clarifying 
rebuttal of Army authorities succeeded in 
turning a serious misunderstanding into 
an opportunity for educating the public. 

Army explanations favorably impressed 
the Truman Committee investigating the 
national defense program, but the agita- 
tion brought home to all agencies con- 
cerned how seriously the food situation 
was regarded by civilians. Public charges 
of waste undoubtedly hastened the organ- 
ization of the Food Service Program and 
to that extent had positive results. 125 

On 1 June 1943, Lt. Gen. Brehon B. 
Somervell, Commanding General, ASF, 
declared that more adequate provision for 
mess supervision should be made in the 
ASF, and directed The Quartermaster 
General to prepare a plan that would 
designate the OQMG as the staff agency 
for mess management at ASF headquar- 
ters level. General Gregory promptly sub- 
mitted a plan that was put into effect on 3 
July by ASF Circular 45. 126 The Food 
Service Program was thereby established, 
but the mere enunciation of a new policy 
was not sufficient; it was imperative that 
the objectives of the new program be 
brought home to the service commands. 
For this purpose a conference, carefully 
planned and well attended, was held in 
Chicago in mid-August. It covered all 
topics pertinent to mess management and 
food conservation and demonstrated the 

124 Rpt, ASF Food Sv Conf, 1 1-14 Aug 43, Chi- 
cago, 111., p. 17, address by Lt Col Charles F. 
Kearney, Subsistence Br, OQMG. 

125 (1) See, for example, Ltr, Lt Col Clarence F. 
Murray, Asst SvC IG, to CG Fourth SvC, 15 Mar 43, 
sub: Rpt of Investigation of Alleged Waste of Food 
by Troops Stationed on Granny White Pike near 
Nashville, Tenn. (2) Ltr, Col C. W. Mason, IG, to 
CG Third Army, Ft. Sam Houston, Tex., 31 Dec 42, 
sub: Investigation of Alleged Wrongful Disp of Army 
Food. (3) Senate Rpt. 77th Cong., 1st Sess., Hearings 
Before a Special Committee Investigating the National De- 
fense Program (Washington, 1941). 

126 (1 ) Memo, Gen Somervell for TQMG, 1 Jun 43, 
sub: Mess Supervision. (2) Memo, TQMG for CG 
ASF, 26 Jun 43, sub: QM Food Sv. (3) For adminis- 
trative developments, see Risch, The Quartermaster 
Corps: Organization, Supply, and Services \\, Ch. I. | 



work that would have to be carried on by 
service commanders and their directors of 
food service if the program was to succeed. 

Theoretically all administrative ele- 
ments of the Food Service Program were 
in existence before its creation. The differ- 
ence between early messing operations and 
those instituted by the program lay in the 
fact that food service activities were now 
co-ordinated and centralized, with a staff 
authority set up in Washington. New em- 
phasis was placed on providing trained 
mess personnel, standardizing proceed- 
ings, and popularizing methods of saving 
food. An educational program was insti- 
tuted in which conferences became the ve- 
hicles for transmitting the data developed 
by the Food Service Section (later Branch) 
of the OQMG, and studies of messing 
procedure and continuing reports of op- 
erations provided the basis for conserva- 
tion doctrine. The Army program for 
preventing food wastage was centered on 
careful training in food conservation for 
every Army cook and baker. This was ac- 
complished through the system of bakers' 
and cooks 1 schools, which was expanded 
until it reached a peak of ninety-nine 
schools. In addition to this training, dem- 
onstration teams gave refresher courses to 
show the latest and most efficient methods 
of preparing and handling foods, 

Within a year after its establishment the 
Food Service Program had accomplished 
considerable improvement in food prep- 
aration and service and a reduction of food 
waste. 137 This had been achieved as a re- 
sult of the many projects conducted by the 
Food Service Branch. Among these was 
the introduction of the "Cooks* Work- 
sheet," which contained complete instruc- 
tions to cooks on methods of preparation 
and the amounts of food to prepare. It also 
required them to report whether the cor- 

rect amount had been prepared, to list 
edible and over-all waste, and to show the 
disposition of leftovers. For an eight -month 
period beginning in October 1943, the fig- 
ures on the reduction of edible waste 
revealed a saving of 10,709,510 pounds of 
edible food in ASF installations alone. 

Weekly drives, of great importance in 
the education of mess sergeants and cooks, 
were conducted to improve certain phases 
of mess operations, among them the stor- 
age and care of meats, the use of leftovers, 
the making of coffee, the preparation of 
vegetables, and the elimination of bread 
waste. The drive conducted on meat cook- 
ing alone demonstrated that it was pos- 
sible to save as much as 520,000,000 a year 
by roasting meats at proper temperatures. 
Furthermore, conservation efforts reduced 
the issue of shortening in most service com- 
mands by at least 50 percent. 

The Food Service Program also effected 
other savings. The food service directors in 
the service commands and the personnel 
of the Food Service Branch, OQMG, care- 
fully screened requisitions submitted for 
the construction of new mess halls and the 
acquisition of new equipment at desig- 
nated installations. They surveyed feeding 
operations at the installations and pro- 
posed plans for the reorganization and ex- 
pansion of existing serving facilities that 
saved the government not only money but 
also critical materials. 1 ** 

Although much had been accom- 
plished, the QMC had to continue and 
even broaden its efforts to save food, for 
the need to conserve food increased 

,lr A Review of Activities and Accomplishments, 
Food Service Branch, Office of The Quartermaster 
General, address by Maj John W. Ebersolc, OQMG, 
3d Annual Wartime Conf, National Restaurant Assoc, 
Chicago. 111. (circa August 19441, pp. 16fT 

«« ibid. 



rather than decreased. In March 1945 the 
food supply was found to be "more critical 
than at any time during the present 
war." 129 New conditions, such as the 
growing demands of hospitals, compelled 
fresh investigations and new recommenda- 
tions. In any event, the tendency toward 
waste was constant; it could not be elim- 
inated entirely but could only be held in 
check. When the war ended, food conser- 
vation overseas had to receive greater at- 
tention, and at home and overseas messing 
operations had to be evaluated from the 
point of view of economy and conserva- 
tion. The activities of the Food Service 
Program were thus carried over into the 
postwar period. 

The Army's food conservation program 
was a relatively novel activity. To be sure 
posters had urged food conservation in 

World War I, and the doughboy of that 
war had participated in a "clean-plate" 
campaign, but this was fundamentally dif- 
ferent from the practical steps taken by the 
Food Service Branch to assure conserva- 
tion during World War II and after. Con- 
trols had had to be developed, extended, 
strengthened, and implemented against 
waste, unsanitary conditions, poor food 
preparation, and other undesirable condi- 
tions, and these controls, in many cases, 
had been vestigial or nonexistent before 
the war. Long before the end of the war, 
food service had become a major oper- 
ation of the QMC. 130 

129 Memo, Gen Barnes, OQMG, for CG ASF, 29 
Mar 45, sub: Food Sv Program. 

i:io p or a more detailed analysis of the Food Service 
Program see Louis Filler, The Food Service Program, 
draft of typed monograph in Hist Br, OQMG. 


Problems of Industrial 

In the midst of mobilizing the country's 
resources for war, various government 
agencies, including the War Department, 
had to give thought to the problems of 
industrial demobilization. The need to 
anticipate the economic impact of peace 
upon the country had been amply demon- 
strated by the industrial dislocations that 
followed World War I. Only by advance 
planning could an orderly transition from 
a war to a peacetime economy be assured. 
Hence, even as the Quartermaster Corps 
directed its efforts toward streamlining 
procurement procedures, maintaining an 
even and adequate flow of materiel from 
manufacturers, and distributing and issu- 
ing food, clothing, equipment, and general 
supplies expeditiously, the Corps and all 
other supply agencies of the War Depart- 
ment had to plan for the time when pro- 
duction programs would be revised down- 
ward, when contracts would be termi- 
nated, and when facilities and materiel 
would become surplus to the needs of the 

The cumulative economic effects of 
World War II were greater and the result- 
ing problems of demobilization more 
numerous and difficult than in World War 
I when industrial production did not reach 
its potential peak because of the war's 
brevity. More than three times as many 

contractors were involved in manufactur- 
ing supplies for the War Department dur- 
ing World War II. Cancellations on V-J 
Day of the undelivered balances on con- 
tracts were more than ten times the value 
of such balances at the end of World War 
I. The far-flung operations of World War 
II necessitated longer supply lines and 
many more installations to maintain 
them. The increased size and complexity 
of the military organization for this war 
and its supporting industry made impera- 
tive the development of demobilization 
plans that could be put into effect imme- 
diately upon the cessation of hostilities. 
Although the demobilization task was 
more complex than in 1918-19, the gov- 
ernment was better able to handle the 
problems because of the greater centrali- 
zation of governmental control, the possi- 
bility of drawing on earlier experience, 
and the awareness of the need for advance 
demobilization planning. 1 

Planning for Demobilization 

As early as December 1942 the War 
Department gave formal consideration to 

1 For a detailed account of planning, see Erna 
Risch, Demobilization Planning and Operation in the 
Quartermaster Corps, QMC Historical Studies, 19 
(Washington, 1948). 



the question of demobilization, and it in- 
augurated an official program of demo- 
bilization planning in the spring of 1943 
when the Chief of Staff directed the Com- 
manding General, Army Service Forces, 
to "initiate preliminary studies exploring 
the field of basic policy and broad plan- 
ning for demobilization of our military 
organization after the cessation of hos- 
tilities." 2 

Demobilization Planning Organization 

A thoroughly integrated organization 
for demobilization planning took shape in 
the War Department during 1943. At its 
head was the Special Planning Division, 
which was established in July as a special 
staff division of the General Staff, replac- 
ing the Project Planning Division created 
in April by the Commanding General, 
ASF, in the office of the Deputy Chief of 
Staff for Service Commands. 3 The Special 
Planning Division supervised and co-ordi- 
nated all postwar planning activities in the 
War Department and maintained liaison 
with other governmental agencies engaged 
in similar planning. In carrying out its 
duties, the division called upon existing 
War Department staff and operating agen- 
cies for exhaustive study and solution of 
specific demobilization problems it as- 
signed to them. 

Early demobilization plans were made 
in secrecy lest the public be misled into 
thinking that the end of the war was im- 
minent and that production levels did not 
need to be maintained. As a consequence, 
the QMC and the other technical services 
were not brought into active participation 
in the program until late in the summer of 
1943 when it became apparent that indus- 
trial demobilization would have to be 
highly decentralized for execution in the 

technical services and that various phases 
would have to be discussed with repre- 
sentatives of industry. At that point the 
ASF advised the chiefs of the technical 
services to establish demobilization units 
and arranged a meeting for 3 1 August, at 
which time it reviewed the organization 
for demobilization planning at head- 
quarters and the work accomplished by 
that date. 4 

The Quartermaster General had already 
established a committee composed princi- 
pally of the chiefs of the divisions within 
the OQMG in order that complete co- 
ordination might be effected throughout 
the Corps in exploring the field of demobi- 
lization planning/ A formal organization 
was not set up in the OQMG until the fall 
when Headquarters, ASF, impressed with 
the complexity and scope of the demobi- 
lization problems, directed The Quarter- 
master General to establish a demobiliza- 
tion planning unit. Although experience 
had shown that it was best to assign for de- 
mobilization planning personnel who were 
employed on the current duties of their 
offices, the ASF felt that supervision and 
direction of such planning in each staff 
echelon required "the undivided attention 
of competent personnel." G 

As a consequence, the OQMG estab- 
lished a Demobilization Planning Branch 

2 Memo, CofS for CG ASF, 1 4 Apr 43, sub: Demob 
Ping. (File numbers for documents referred to in this 
chapter are omitted since all can be found in the 370.1 
and the 3B0 series.) 

3 Memo, Actg SW for Dir of Special Ping Div, 22 
Jul 43, sub: Orgn and Functions. 

4 (1) Memo, Dir of Industrial Demob, ASF, for 
TQMG, 23 Aug 43, sub: Ping for Industrial Demob. 
(2) Memo for File, Col Lawrence Westbrook, Exec 

Secy, Special Committee on Mat Demob Ping, ASF, 
3 1 Aug 43, no sub. 

5 OQMG OO 40-4, 31 Jul 43, sub: Demob Ping. 

6 Memo, CofS ASF, for TQMG et at., 16 Nov 43, 
sub: Demob Ping. 



in the Organization Planning and Control 
Division in November. It functioned in a 
staff capacity to supervise, co-ordinate, 
and control all demobilization planning 
within the QMC, 7 The branch also acted 
as the liaison office for contact with all 
other echelons on matters pertaining to de- 
mobilization. At the same time, a demobi- 
lization planning unit was set up in each 
of three staff and six operating divisions 
within the OQMG. 8 These units were re- 
sponsible for specific phases of planning 
assigned to them and for co-ordinating all 
planning within their respective divisions. 

The demobilization planning units in 
the divisions and the Demobilization Plan- 
ning Branch constituted the two higher 
echelons of planning within the QMC. A 
third echelon existed in the depots, for at 
the direction of The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral a demobilization planning unit was 
established at each of the Quartermaster 
depots and Quartermaster sections of ASF 
depots. 9 These units initiated, supervised, 
and co-ordinated all planning within the 

The operating units accomplished the 
detailed planning required to implement 
demobilization plans, while the higher 
echelons of authority in the War Depart- 
ment General Staff developed over-all 
policies and procedures. The Special Plan- 
ning Division reviewed the reports or 
studies made by the operating units on 
specific demobilization problems and, 
when necessary, forwarded them to ap- 
propriate General Staff divisions for clear- 
ance and then to higher authority for 
approval. Once approved, these reports 
became part of the final demobilization 
plan after the implementing regulations or 
legislation, where indicated, had been 
drafted and approved. 

Materiel Demobilization Plans 

When the Project Planning Division, 
ASF, first analyzed the problems of de- 
mobilization in April 1943, it divided 
them into two broad categories: man- 
power and industry. 10 The latter included 
a wide range of problems, such as contract 
termination, disposition of government- 
owned and sponsored plants, and disposal 
of surplus materiel. 

As the problems of materiel demobiliza- 
tion became clearly defined, they were as- 
signed to appropriate War Department 
agencies for study and solution, and a 
statement of the premises and assumptions 
to be used as the basis for planning accom- 
panied each assignment. The Project Plan- 
ning Division assumed that existing agen- 
cies and machinery would be used as 
much as possible; that demobilization 
would be decentralized to the greatest ex- 
tent practicable; that plans would be flexi- 
ble and subject to constant review; and 
that curtailment of wartime production 

7 OQMG OO 25-57, 27 Nov 43, sub: Industrial 
Demob Ping. 

8 The staff divisions included the Fiscal, Personnel, 
and Military Planning Divisions. The six operating 
divisions were the Military Training, International, 
Procurement, Service Installations, Fuels and Lubri- 
cants, and Storage and Distribution Divisions. Later 
changes in office organization, such as the establish- 
ment of the Subsistence Branch as a division, brought 
some additional demobilization planning units. 

9 Ltr, TQMG to CG PQMD, 30 Nov 43, sub: In- 
dustrial Demob Ping. 

10 Demobilization of manpower involved consid- 
eration of the immediate problems relating to the re- 
deployment of troops after the war ended in Europe 
as well as analysis of the long-range problems con- 
cerning the size and composition of the postwar Mili- 
tary Establishment. Troop redeployment and demo- 
bilization were largely governed by plans formulated 
by the General Staff. Quartermaster contributions in 
this field were limited to aiding in the development of 
plans for the physical plant of the postwar Military 



and release of facilities for conversion to 
peacetime production would be accom- 
plished as rapidly as the military and 
economic situation would permit. 11 At the 
same time, demobilization plans were to 
be phased by periods, with Period I cover- 
ing the interval from the defeat of Ger- 
many to the cessation of all hostilities; 
Period II, from the cessation of all hostili- 
ties, which was assumed to be upon the de- 
feat of Japan, until the completion of final 
demobilization; and Period III, postwar 

Until 1945, demobilization planning 
was concerned for the most part with those 
problems that pertained to Period I and 
specifically with materiel demobilization. 
This planning was centered on developing 
procedures for dismantling the war ma- 
chinery for the procurement and distribu- 
tion of military supplies and redirecting 
production into civilian channels. The 
Materiel Demobilization Plan, Period I, 
required detailed provisions for action by 
subordinate units in Washington and by 
field installations. At the same time exten- 
sive co-ordination was necessary to insure 
successful and speedy operation. To pro- 
mote this purpose, the Materiel Demobi- 
lization Plan for each echelon was based 
upon and co-ordinated with the plan of 
the next higher echelon; for example, the 
OQMG plan was based on that of the ASF 
and the plan of a Quartermaster depot 
was based on that of the OQMG. Each 
plan included the assignment, within the 
echelon, of responsibility for carrying out 
specific actions designed to accomplish the 
operations for materiel demobilization 
prescribed for that echelon. 

The major portion of the Materiel De- 
mobilization Plan dealt with the termina- 
tion and settlement of contracts, the clear- 

ance of contractors' plants to allow rapid 
reconversion to civilian industry, and the 
disposal of property, including raw mate- 
rials, partially completed articles, and 
finished end items. The plan was intended 
to be so comprehensive and so workable 
that, with its accompanying drafts of di- 
rectives, it could be applied without modi- 
fication on V Day to the execution of ac- 
tual materiel demobilization operations. 
Continuous refinement of planning, of 
proper assembling and recording of in- 
formation, and of procedures and records 
established in advance throughout sub- 
ordinate echelons was necessary to achieve 
this end. 

Furthermore, in order that all echelons 
might develop plans based on the same 
criteria, the Special Planning Division, in 
co-operation with the G-3 and G-4 Divi- 
sions of the War Department General 
Staff, the Army Air Forces, and the Army 
Service Forces, formulated a statement of 
policies and assumptions governing indus- 
trial demobilization for the guidance of all 
concerned. 12 The objective of industrial 
demobilization planning was to speed re- 
conversion from war to civilian produc- 
tion, while still maintaining maximum war 
production needed for current military re- 
quirements, by releasing promptly those 
manufacturers whose services became sur- 

11 The first premises, which were in accord with 
those contained in a report by the Special Army Com- 
mittee entitled Survey of Current Military Program, 
15 March 1943, revised 28 April, were set forth in the 
report of the Project Planning Division of 18 June. 
Rpt, Project Ping Div, Office of DCofS for SvCs, to 
CG ASF, 18 Jun 43, sub: Survey of Demob Ping. 

12 Special Ping Div, 19 Mar 45, sub: WD Policies 
and Assumptions Governing Industrial and Mat 
Demob. This third revision of policies first formulated 
in the fall of 1943 was approved by the Under Secre- 
tary of War on 7 April 1945 and by the Deputy 
Chief of Staff on 10 April. 



plus to the war effort. Achievement of this 
end necessitated immediate termination of 
the maximum quantity of war production 
consistent with continuing military re- 
quirements and sound economic practice. 
It also required early and equitable settle- 
ment of claims of both prime contractors 
and subcontractors under terminated war 
contracts, adequate interim financing until 
such settlement could be achieved, and 
prompt removal of termination inventories 
and government -owned machine tools and 
equipment from plants of war contractors 
in accordance with the provisions of the 
Contract Settlement Act. It was further 
necessary to redistribute efficiently be- 
tween manufacturing plants with excesses 
and those in short supply, materials, sup- 
plies, tools, industrial equipment, and 
other facilities, and not only to declare as 
surplus but also to report promptly to the 
disposal agency such of these as were no 
longer required by the War Department. 
Finally, it was essential to retain in pilot 
production or in stand-by reserve such 
government-owned facilities and equip- 
ment as might be necessary to provide for 
continuing research and development and 
for the availability of adequate production 
capacity to insure military security in the 
postwar period. 

Probably the most important single fac- 
tor shaping materiel demobilization plan- 
ning was the question of timing — the great 
unknown element in all the plans. From 
the beginning the planners were aware of 
an ever increasing possibility that they 
might be faced with a sudden collapse of 
the enemy and a demand for immediate 
demobilization action. Although the pres- 
sure to achieve a high state of readiness for 
V-E Day was greatest in 1944 and 1945, 
planning was always conducted on the as- 
sumption that "tomorrow is V Day." 13 

The use of this formula was of great im- 
portance since it not only required work- 
able plans but also insured their being 
kept up to date through constant revision. 

After the Project Planning Division had 
assigned the broad problems of materiel 
demobilization as a group to the Office of 
the Director of Materiel, ASF, in June 
1943, and study had revealed that action 
to implement industrial demobilization 
would have to be decentralized to the 
technical services, the Director of Indus- 
trial Demobilization, ASF, instructed the 
QMC and the other technical services to 
prepare minimum skeleton plans for mate- 
riel demobilization by 20 December. 14 In- 
corporating the information requested, the 
OQ_MG submitted a plan that the director 
felt reflected a sound approach to the 
problems presented and gave "promise of 
excellent ultimate development." 15 

The OQMG indicated that the small 
amount of War Department equipment 
and machine tools used in the manufac- 
ture of Quartermaster supplies would be 
removed on V Day from the contractor's 
plants and shipped to, and stored in, the 
nearest Quartermaster depot. It was there- 
fore not desirable to designate points of 
storage and procedure for storage. Mate- 
rials to be cleared from contractors' plants 
fell into two categories, for each of which 
the plan indicated the disposition. (1) Uni- 
form cloth, canvas, duck, webbing, minor 
findings, and minor items of metal and 
hardware, which were the property of the 

13 Rpt, Lt Col Robert W. Chasieney, Jr., Resume of 
the Activities of the Office of Director of Industrial 
Demobilization and its Predecessors, 1943-45, p. 8. 

14 Memo, Dir of Industrial Demob, ASF, for 
TQMG etal., 23 Nov 43, sub: Skeleton Plan for Mat 

15 Memo, Dir of Industrial Demob, ASF, for 
TQMG, 1 Feb 44, sub: Mat Demob Ping for QMC. 



United States and supplied to the con- 
tractors from Army stock, would be re- 
turned to the nearest Quartermaster depot. 
(2) Materials and supplies of all kinds pro- 
cured by contractors directly from other 
commercial concerns and used in produc- 
ing Quartermaster equipment would be 
retained by the contractors when such 
supplies were suitable for use in future 
production of commercial products. Those 
supplies that could not be so used would 
be turned over to the QMG and removed 
to the nearest Quartermaster depot. The 
plan also established procedures that 
could be put into effect in the event an 
emergency developed. In addition, as a 
part of its planning, the OQMG directed 
each major procurement depot to main- 
tain a running inventory — to be corrected 
monthly — showing War Department 
equipment, machine tools, and materials 
in contractors' plants, and indicating the 
storage depots that must be prepared to 
receive them. 

Insofar as industrial plants owned by 
the War Department were concerned, the 
QMC had none to place in stand-by re- 
serve; it declared one — the Searchlight 
Mirror Corp., Cincinnati, Ohio — surplus; 
and it retained for indefinite operation the 
factories located at the Jefferson ville and 
the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depots. 
The Corps had no plants sponsored by the 
Defense Plant Corporation that were to be 
retained, and The Quartermaster General 
recommended disposal of two such proj- 
ects — the expansion of the Towmeter Co., 
Cleveland, Ohio, and the Rhoem Manu- 
facturing Co., Stockton, Calif. The Corps 
had no industrial or expansion projects for 
the production of Quartermaster equip- 
ment or supplies that were to be stopped 
immediately on V Day. Hi 

Early in 1944 the Director of Industrial 

Demobilization, ASF, instructed The 
Quartermaster General to refine this skele- 
ton plan into a concrete Materiel Demobi- 
lization Plan, Period I, and to carry out its 
preparatory operations, 17 integrating per- 
tinent parts of the plan with current op- 
erating procedures. 18 This directive initi- 
ated the first of many revisions of the 
OQMG plan during 1944. Some were the 
result of efforts to make the plan conform 
to changes introduced into the ASF plan. 
Others were the product of planning by 
the divisions within the OQMG. As plan- 
ning proceeded, more and more provisions 
of the plan were converted into standing 
operating procedures so that, when V-E 
Day actually did arrive, many of the 
eighty-six actions provided for in the plan 
were carried out under these procedures, 
the plan serving merely as a check list. 

Supply Plans 

While materiel demobilization plans 
were being developed, the War Depart- 
ment was exploring other aspects of supply 
logistics, among them the disposal of prop- 
erty, supplies, and equipment of a military 
nature or their retention as war reserves; 
the selection of storage depots for such sup- 
plies; and the adoption of a supply plan 
for the peacetime Military Establishment. 

In the summer of 1943 the Project Plan- 
ning Division requested the Director of 
Operations, ASF, to undertake a study of 
four possible plans of supply for the Army, 

16 Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 20 Dec 43, sub: 
Skeleton Plan for Mat Demob. 

" Preparatory operations included, for example, 
the computation of requirements for end items for 
Period I and of the required production of such items 
during the period, as well as the preparation of de- 
tailed procurement plans for those items. 

18 Memo, Dir of Industrial Demob, ASF, for 
TQMG, 1 Feb 44, sub: Mat Demob Ping for QMC. 



and he, in turn, directed the chiefs of the 
technical services to submit their recom- 
mendations by 1 August. 19 In his report 
General Gregory, after reviewing the sup- 
ply system of the preceding forty years, 
emphasized the need for elasticity and flex- 
ibility in any peacetime supply system and 
recommended that it be "patterned upon 
the present direct system of supply, which 
has, to date, stood the test for wartime sup- 
ply in the Theater of Operations and the 
Zone of the Interior." 20 Under the direct 
system of supply the chiefs of the technical 
services were responsible for adequately 
stocking depots, and station commanders 
were authorized to deal directly with de- 
pot commanders on all supply matters. 
The basic plan of supply for the peacetime 
Military Establishment, approved by the 
Secretary of War on 1 December 1943, 
continued the use of the direct system of 
supply for the continental United States 
but provided for a territorial system of 
supply for all overseas bases. Under the 
territorial system the commander of a 
given area controlled all supply installa- 
tions and was responsible for the supply of 
troops located within the limits of his com- 
mand. Requisitions for supplies required 
in these supply installations were submit- 
ted to a designated port of embarkation, 
which secured the supplies from depots 
under the control of the chiefs of the tech- 
nical services, who were responsible for 
maintaining adequate stocks to support 
the overseas forces. 21 

Other aspects of supply required atten- 
tion, particularly the disposition on V Day 
and thereafter of ASF supplies and equip- 
ment at, or en route to, ports in this coun- 
try and the repair and disposition of sup- 
plies and equipment in the theaters in- 
volved in the war with Germany. To 
implement a War Department plan, 

agencies under the control of the Director 
of Supply, ASF, drafted a tentative plan, 
which, in anticipation of a conference on 
15 June 1944, was submitted to the techni- 
cal services for study. 22 

The conference revealed the need for re- 
vising the ASF plan to effect greater co- 
ordination with the planning in the Office 
of the Chief of Transportation and for in- 
corporating more specific details. During 
the summer a number of other conferences 
were held, and the plan was further re- 
vised. Data submitted by the OQMG for 
inclusion in the plan designated the Quar- 
termaster depots that would receive sup- 
plies diverted from overseas shipment and 
the standards of repair and disposition. 23 

On 4 September copies of the ASF Basic 
Supply Plan, Period I, and Implementa- 
tion of ASF Supply Plan for Period I were 
sent to the chiefs of the technical services 
with instructions for each to prepare the 
necessary detailed plans required by his 
agency to carry out the directive. 24 The 
QMC plan was ready by 25 September, 
and it was sent, together with the ASF 
plan and its implementation, to the com- 
manding officers of the Quartermaster de- 
pots and the Quartermaster supply officers 
at ASF depots. They were directed to re- 

19 (1) Memo, Brig Gen William F. Tompkins for 
Dir of Opns, ASF, 22 Jun 43, sub: Demob Ping. (2) 
Memo, Gen Lutes, Dir of Opns, ASF, for TQMG et 
at., 7 Jul 43, same sub. 

2(1 Memo, Gen Gregory for CG ASF [circa 1 Aug 
43], no sub. 

21 Memo, Actg Dir of Ping Div, ASF, for TQMG 
et at., 9 Dec 43, sub: Plan of Sup for Peacetime Mil 

22 Memo, Brig Gen Frank A. Heileman, Dir of Sup 
ASF, for TQMG et at., 9 Jun 44, sub: Draft of Direc- 
tive to Implement WD Plan for Disp of ASF-Supplied 

Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for CG ASF, 14 
Jul 44, sub: ASF Sup Demob Plan for Period I. 

24 Memo, Gen Heileman, Dir of Sup, ASF, for 
TQMG et ai., 4 Sep 44, sub: ASF Basic Sup Plan, 
Period I. 



view it and take action to insure compli- 
ance with the provisions of the Quarter- 
master plan. 25 

The keynote of the supply plan for 
Period I was simplicity, and accordingly 
existing policies and procedures in refer- 
ence to levels of supply and supply pro- 
cedures were to be used to the maximum. 
On V Day, unless specifically directed by 
appropriate authority, all supplies at sea 
en route to the European and North Afri- 
can theaters and to the Middle East in- 
cluding the Persian Gulf Command were 
to be delivered as scheduled. All supplies 
in the United States en route to these 
areas were to be directed to the designated 
depots and returned to the jurisdiction of 
the chief of the technical service of origin, 
except subsistence, Quartermaster indi- 
vidual clothing and equipment, medical 
supplies and equipment, all supplies and 
equipment distributed by the Morale 
Services and the Special Services Divisions, 
and supplies for civilians in the liberated 
areas. All edited requisitions and shipping 
orders covering the above exceptions were 
to be honored, but all others were to be 

Later the OQMG requested so many 
exceptions — such as coal, maintenance and 
operating supplies for overseas can and 
drum plants, spare parts, repair supplies 
and equipment, and the like — from the V 
Day embargo provisions that Headquar- 
ters, ASF, instead of repeatedly changing 
the plan, called attention to the fact that 
upon request of the theater commanders 
shipment of additional items might be 
specially authorized. 26 In the absence of 
such requests by the theater commanders, 
shipments could be made when, in the 
opinion of a chief of a technical service, an 
exception to the V Day embargo would be 
desirable. In that case, a recommendation 

was to be made to the responsible port 
commander for clearance with the theater 
concerned. 27 This policy was to cover all 
subsequent requests for exceptions. 

To implement the supply plan, provi- 
sion was made for the advance marking of 
overseas shipments. Overseas requisitions 
edited in the zone of interior and requisi- 
tions initiated there, directing shipment of 
supplies and equipment to the European 
and North African theaters, the United 
States Army Forces in the Middle East, 
and the Persian Gulf Command, were to 
be marked "STO" for stop, to indicate the 
embargo was to apply to these shipments, 
or "SHP" for ship, to indicate that the ex- 
cepted items were to proceed to their over- 
seas destination. On the day the embargo 
was put into effect, the "STO" marking 
was to be discontinued inasmuch as only 
requisitions for items to be marked "SHP" 
would be processed. 28 Later revisions of 
the supply plan refined its details and 
widened its application by including ship- 
ments to other command areas. 

By the fall of 1944 considerable progress 
had been made in planning, and all plans 
had been consolidated under the broader 
title of Plans for Period I (Redeployment, 
Readjustment, and Demobilization). 
Quartermaster Corps materiel demobili- 
zation and supply plans were similarly 

23 Ltr, TQMG to GOs QM Depots et at., 25 Sep 44, 
sub: V-E Day Sup Demob Plans. 

26 (1) Memo, Col Oliver E. Cound, OQMG, for CG 
ASF, 30 Sep 44, sub: Basic Sup Plan and Implemen- 
tation. (2) Memo, Cound for CG ASF, 16 Nov 44, 
sub: Exception of Repair Supplies and Equip. (3) 
Memo, Gen Barnes, OQMG, for CG ASF, 22 Nov 
44, sub: Exception of Certain Spare Parts, Tools, and 

27 1st Ind, Dir of Plans and Opns, ASF, 2 1 Nov 44, 
on Memo, Col Cound, OQ.MG, for CG ASF, 16 Nov 
44, sub: Exception of Repair Supplies and Equip. 

28 Ltr, TAG to CG ASF et at., 12 Oct 44, sub: Ad- 
vance Marking of Overseas Shpmts, AG 400. 161 (30 
Sep 44) OB-S-SPMOT-M. 



consolidated and published in March 
1945. 29 

Although it had been assumed in plan- 
ning that preparations would have to be 
made for the initiation of action to meet 
the sudden impact of V-E Day, in reality 
the whole transition to Period I was ac- 
complished gradually over a period of sev- 
eral weeks, beginning early in April 1945. 
When V-E Day occurred, many of the 
actions for which provision had been made 
in the Materiel Demobilization Plan had 
either been placed in effect so gradually or 
were so well established as standing oper- 
ating procedures that to have activated 
them formally on V-E Day would have 
been an anticlimax. Actually numerous 
actions were canceled because they were 
covered by standing operating procedures. 
The transition that occurred on V-E Day, 
while definitely the result of two years of 
intensive planning, was nonetheless of a 
different type than might have been an- 
ticipated from the general trend of the 
early planning. 

Planning for Period II 

In planning for Period II, emphasis con- 
tinued to be placed upon materiel demobi- 
lization, and the pattern of planning de- 
veloped for Period I was utilized, though 
modified to some extent since planning in 
the second period was based on occupa- 
tion rather than active hostilities. Accord- 
ing to the time schedule set up when de- 
mobilization planning was initiated, Pe- 
riod I (covering the interval from the de- 
feat of Germany to the cessation of all 
hostilities) would be of eighteen months' 
duration. It was assumed that the rede- 
ployment of troops from the European to 
the Pacific theater would be completed in 

that period before any large-scale demobi- 
lization of the armed forces occurred. 
Period II, lasting from twelve to eighteen 
months would start with the cessation of 
hostilities, upon the defeat of Japan, and 
end with the completion of final demobili- 

In actuality, Period I was to be abruptly 
telescoped, and intimations of that fact 
caused the Commanding General, ASF, 
on 9 May 1945, to direct the preparation 
of a Period II demobilization plan for use 
in the event of the sudden surrender of 
Japan. Because of the rapidity with which 
events moved toward V-J Day, the ASF 
interim plan became the final plan for 
Period II. This plan consisted of three 
parts: the first set forth strategic concepts, 
policies, and assumptions; the second, 
logistical data revised periodically; and 
the third, the plans of the functional staff 

By 25 July, the OQMG had published 
its implementing plan. 30 V-J Day occurred 
before a depot plan could be drafted, but 
in anticipation of this development, The 
Quartermaster General teletyped instruc- 
tions on 10 August to commanding officers 
at Quartermaster installations, directing 
them to take all necessary action in prep- 
aration for the possible early activation of 
the OQMG Interim Plan. Unless other- 
wise specified, each action listed in the 
plan was to be put into effect upon notifi- 
cation to The Quartermaster General by 
the ASF functional staff director having 
responsibility for it. The Director of the 
Organization Planning and Control Divi- 

28 (1) ASF Cir 264, Sec. V, 16 Aug 44, sub: Plan. (2) 
ASF Cir 336, Sec. Ill, 7 Oct 44, sub: Redeployment, 
Readj. and Demob. (3) QMC Manual, QMC 19-5. 

■"' See QMC Manual, QMC 19-9, 25 Jul 45, sub: 
OQMG Interim Plan for Period II (Readj and 



sion, OQMG, would then transmit this 
notice of activation to all OQMG divisions 
and field installations. Certain actions be- 
came effective automatically while others 
needed no formal implementation inas- 
much as they required continuous oper- 
ations prior to Period II or were standing 
operating procedures. 

The OQMG Interim Plan for Period II, 
like that for Period I, placed primary em- 
phasis upon supply and materiel demobi- 
lization, and the implementing procedures 
were carried over from the earlier plan- 
ning. The readjustment of production 
was the heart of materiel demobilization 
planning in both periods. Requirements 
had been revised downward following the 
defeat of Germany, and, in anticipation of 
the defeat of Japan, the ASF initiated a 
computation of a supply program for 
Period II. Procurement programs were re- 
viewed, and the ASF directed the chiefs of 
the technical services to review and submit 
a list of all items, both principal and sec- 
ondary, for which continued procurement 
after V-J Day would be necessary. 31 As a 
consequence, it was possible to reduce re- 
quirements to zero for practically all sec- 
ondary and most principal items, except 
such items as subsistence, petroleum, spare 
parts, medical supplies, and housekeeping 
items necessary to sustain the Army during 
the period of occupation and demobiliza- 
tion. These advance preparations, includ- 
ing the preparation of telegrams that could 
be dispatched to war contractors in a 
matter of hours, permitted production, im- 
mediately upon the President's announce- 
ment of Japan's surrender, to be cut back 
to levels needed for Period II operations. 
Thus the detailed planning engaged in 
during the war years in anticipation of V-E 
Day and V-J Day promoted orderly 

Downward Revision of the Production 

Special Army Supply Program 

Planning for the downward revision of 
production, the core of the materiel demo- 
bilization problem, was based on the 
Special Army Supply Program. In this 
program, requirements personnel esti- 
mated the amounts of materiel needed by 
the Army in accordance with troop bases 
projected by higher authority to show the 
size and distribution of the Army during 
Periods I, II, and III. For planning pur- 
poses they compared the Special Army 
Supply Program with current procure- 
ment plans to determine the approximate 
effect of V-E Day on current operations, 
that is, the extent of decreases or increases 
in the procurement of individual items as 
of a particular date. Planners then esti- 
mated from this comparison the work load 
to be expected, the personnel required to 
handle it, the items affected, and the num- 
ber of contractors to be released by termi- 
nations. In turn, the contractors could be 
advised of the expected effect of V-E Day 
on their operations so that they could 
make their own reconversion plans. The 
basic objective was to permit reconversion 
to normal, peacetime operations with the 
minimum amount of shock to the civilian 
economy and at the same time provide 
adequate protection for the government's 

The ASF called for the first Special 
Army Supply Program in the fall of 1943. 
Utilizing a troop basis furnished by the 
Special Planning Division, the OQMG 

31 Memo, Dir of Reqmts and Stock Control Div, 
ASF, for TQMG el al., 11 Aug 45, sub: Preparation 
for Activation of Period II Procurement Program — 



and other supply agencies estimated re- 
quirements hurriedly and without benefit 
of decisions from higher authority on 
many basic rules. In the course of comput- 
ing the program, the OQMG called atten- 
tion to a number of problems. 32 

One of these was the use of an, over-all 
on-hand figure as assets applied against 
gross requirements in the Special Army 
Supply Program. This procedure assumed 
that all equipment in the hands of troops 
as of 1 January 1944 could be considered 
as full assets, and all equipment obtained 
from demobilized troops could be reissued. 
This assumption was unrealistic since full 
repossession was impossible. The OQMG 
therefore recommended that a percentage, 
such as 25 percent, reflecting the amount 
of reissuable equipment after salvage and 
repair, be applied to authorized initial 
issues outstanding, in order to obtain an 
estimate of stocks in the hands of troops 
that could be considered as assets. 33 Fur- 
thermore, in this first Special Army Supply 
Program of 7 November 1943 all stocks 
estimated to be overseas had been con- 
sidered as a full asset, the assumption 
being made that inventories in one area on 
1 January 1944 were immediately trans- 
ferable without loss to another area. The 
OQMG argued that perfect mobility of 
stocks without loss between various thea- 
ters was not possible and recommended 
that overseas stocks be adjusted by a per- 
centage, such as 50 percent, in order to 
estimate stocks in the theaters that were 
available for issue. 

Although Headquarters, ASF, agreed 
that a percentage of the equipment in the 
hands of troops who were to be demobi- 
lized should be discounted as an asset to 
allow for salvage and repair losses, it did 
not concur in the Quartermaster sugges- 
tions and particularly rejected the 50 per- 

cent adjustment proposed on stocks to be 
reissued or transferred. Headquarters, 
ASF, called attention to the fact that it was 
assumed, although not yet approved as 
policy, that Quartermaster subsistence, 
clothing, and bakery equipment in the 
European and African theaters would not 
be transferred. This covered the major 
items of interest to The Quartermaster 
General with respect to transfer. 34 

The OQMG also questioned the two 
criteria used in selecting items for which 
war reserves had been established in the 
program of 7 November — that items 
should be of a noncommercial type, and 
that they should not deteriorate in storage 
within a ten-year period. These criteria 
were inadequate for Quartermaster items. 
Later the ASF decided that the war reserve 
was to consist of those items of military 
supply and equipment of commercial or 
noncommercial type which were essential 
to equip, supply, and maintain the armed 
forces either in training or in active oper- 
ations and which could not be obtained 
commercially in sufficient quantities im- 
mediately upon mobilization or during the 
period required for industry to make 
sufficient deliveries. 35 

3 - Memo, Col Roy C. Moore, OQMG, for Special 
Committee on Mat Demob Ping, ASF, 14 Oct 43, 
sub: Potential Recovery of Surplus Stocks Overseas. 

33 (1) Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for Dir of 
Mat, ASF, 1 7 Feb 44, sub: Computation of Special 
ASP for Demob Ping. (2) See also Chief of Reqmts 
Br, Mil Ping Div, to Chief of Demob Ping Br, OP&C 
Div, OQMG, 10 Feb 44, sub; Directive on Computa- 
tion of Special ASP for Demob Ping 

34 Memo, Dir of Reqmts Div, ASF, for Dir of Indus- 
trial Demob, 25 Feb 44, sub: Conf with OQMG Rep- 
resentatives on Demob Ping. 

35 (1) Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for Dir of 
Mat, ASF, 17 Feb 44; Computation of Special ASP 
for Demob Ping. (2) Memo, Dir of Reqmts Div, ASF, 
for TQMG et al., 15 Apr 44, sub: Special ASP for 
Demob Ping, Sec. I, Period I, 15 Jul 44. 



This first Special Army Supply Program 
was revised as policy decisions were made 
by higher echelons. Even while the Re- 
quirements Branch, OQMG, was revising 
the program, it was also considering 
methods which late in the summer of 1944 
resulted in the establishment of a proce- 
dure whereby that program could be kept 
up to date to reflect major influences, such 
as factors and allowances and latest avail- 
able on-hand figures, in order that a cur- 
rent revised Special Army Supply Program 
requirement could be reviewed continu- 
ously in the light of the regular Army Sup- 
ply Program. With such comparison as a 
basis, items could be classified in one of 
four categories, giving the Requirements 
Branch an indication at any time of those 
items which required various types of 
action in the event that the Special Army 
Supply Program was activated. 38 The 
Special Army Supply Program thereupon 
was revised to account for major changes 
in factors for selected items and adjust- 
ments of net requirements to reflect latest 
available stocks actually on hand. 

With the introduction of the supply con- 
trol system, the Requirements Branch, 
OQMG, began to prepare revised Period 
I requirements on a supply control basis 
for all Quartermaster principal items. 
These computations in the form of Supply 
Control Reports served the purpose of and 
superseded the Special Army Supply Pro- 
gram. Collectively they were referred to as 
MPR-20X. When the end of the war in 
Europe was in sight, the ASF issued in- 
structions covering the implementation of 
MPR-20X. If V-E Day occurred before 
the latest revision had been completed, the 
existing Supply Control Reports would be 
used, subject to certain prescribed adjust- 
ments. If this procedure resulted in any 
significant change in the amount of any 

item to be procured, approval for the pro- 
posed changes had to be obtained from 
Headquarters, ASF, within forty-eight 
hours after V-E Day was announced. 

Facilities Plans 

One of the most useful ends served by 
adequate estimates of requirements was 
the development of facilities plans fore- 
casting the economic impact of V Day on 
the production facilities of the United 
States. Such plans were based on the as- 
sumption that designated sections of the 
Special Army Supply Program were to 
become the basis for procurement as of a 
given date. This assumption enabled the 
planners to determine the effect of large 
cutbacks on facilities that could not be 
absorbed immediately into civilian pro- 
duction. While production scheduling was 
important to the QMC, practically all of 
its items were produced by facilities that 
could be converted quickly and with little 
effort to the production of civilian items. 
This fact was partially recognized by elim- 
inating items of clothing, subsistence, and 
fuels and lubricants from the analysis 
made in the first facilities plan. Later the 
QMC was permitted to omit textiles, 
paper products, and post-exchange (PX) 
items in the preparation of new facilities 

(1) Chief of Methods and Factors Sec to Chief of 
Reqmts Br, OQMG, 27 Jul 44, sub: Special ASP-Cur- 
rent Revisions to Reflect New On Hand Situations. 
(2) Same to same, 29 Jul 44, sub: Special ASP Revi- 
sions and Continuous Review. (3) The four categories 
were: (a) items requiring cutbacks to zero when the 
Special ASP was activated; (b) items for which the 
Special ASP was plus or minus 10 percent within the 
regular ASP; (c) items requiring either an increase of 
at least 10 percent in required production or (d) cut- 
backs of more than 10 percent when the program was 






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Chart 2 — Stop-Work Stages for Clearing Machinery Under JTR 241.3, on the 
Combed and Carded Systems of the Cotton Textile Manufacturing Industry 


Stop-Work Stage* 


Raw cotton* 

Open cotton, to 
and including 


Warp yarn in prep- 
aration for 

Grey cloth 

Grey cloth at finish- 
ing plant 

Goth, dyed and 

a. Unopened bales shall not be opened. 

a. All opened cotton, picker laps, card sliver in cans, sliver laps, ribbon laps, combed 
sliver in cans, drawing stiver in cans, and roving shall be deemed "common 
items," reverting to the contractor unless satisfactory evidence to the contrary 
is presented by the contractor. (Where cotton acquired for the terminated 
contract is of a grade or staple which is foreign to the contractor's regular 
production, the contracting officer will recognize as equitable reimbursement, 
apart from the reimbursement also due because of a downward change in the 
cotton market, a separate reimbursement to the extent of the difference between 
the price for the contract cotton and the contractor's regular grade and staple. 
Contractor shall take inventory at each of the stages mentioned above, in 
accordance with his normal inventory methods.) 

a. The spinning operation under way shall be continued only to a complete doff, 

and the yarn packaged and weighed.** 

b. The roving remaining in creels on spinning frames shall be treated the same as 

other roving, as provided in Stage 2, above. 

c. All single and plied yarn on bobbins, spools, metal cheeses, or similar plant 

facilities required for its normal operations, if not in twisting or warping 
processes, shall be packaged and weighed.** 

d. Yarn that actually has started in the process of being twisted shall be continued 

only to the extent necessary to fill the twister bobbins then on the frame. 
These bobbins shall be doffed, and the yarn packaged and weighed.** Single 
yarn that may remain on the twister creels shall be taken off the creels, and 
packaged and weighed.** 

e. If necessary, sufficient yarn may be processed for use as filling yarn to complete 

the weaving of cloth, as permitted in Stage 5 (a) below, for tie warp actually 
in the loom. 

a. Yarn in the process of warping onto section beams shall be continued only to 

the extent necessary to complete the particular section beams then in process, 
and the yarn shall then be packaged and weighed.** Yarn remaining on creels 
shall be taken off, and then packaged and weighed.** 

b. Section beams in the process of slashing shall be continued through the slasher 

only to the extent necessary to complete the loom beams then being beamed, 
and the remaining section beams shall be taken off the slasher, and the yarn 
packaged and weighed.** 

c. Yarn on loom beams not actually on the loom shall be packaged and weighed.** 

a. Loom beams, on looms, in the process of weaving shall continue in process until 

the warp is woven out, and the loom is cleared. 

b. All grey cloth shall be inspected, packaged, and appropriately graded. 

c. Grey cloth, unopened, at weaving plant shall be held at weaving plant for dis- 


a. Grey cloth, unopened, at finishing plant shall not be opened. 

b. Pieces in process of being sewn together, or which have been sewn together but 

which have not entered the first finishing process, shall be cut apart, measured, 
and packaged. 

c. Cloth which has entered the first wet finishing process (e. g., singeing, boiling, 

deBizing, etc.) shall be completed through the finishing process immediately 
preceding the application of the dye, and measured and packaged, 
a. Goth on to which dyestuff has actually been applied shall be completed into 
the specification fabric, measured and packaged. 

* Special instructioni relative to stock-dyed cotton: (1) unopened bales shall not be opened; (2) all open stock and stock in process in 
openers shall be continued through openers, and then packaged and weighed; (3) all stock actually in process of being dyed shall be com- 
pleted, dried, packaged, and weighed; and (4) all dyed stock in process in pickers (or in form of picker laps), or on cards (or in form of card 
sliver), or in sliver lap, ribbon lap, or comers shall be completed into combed sliver, packaged and weighed, where combed sliver is the speci- 
fied item, or shall be spun into single yam, where yam is the specified item, and then packaged and weighed. 

** Where the contractor is required under these regulations to package yams, by reason of his nonretcntion of same for his own use, 
such packaging shall be in a form and manner most conducive to ready transfer and disposition, in accordance with his available facilities. 



plans. 37 These plans were modified as the 
Special Army Supply Program was 

The last revision of the facilities plans 
was most fortuitous for the War Depart- 
ment since it was made so shortly before 
V-E Day. In the spring of 1945 the QMC 
had no facilities plans, for they were re- 
quired only in those instances where cut- 
backs of $500,000 or more were indicated 
for any one month in 1945 for clothing, 
textiles, and paper items. No cutbacks of 
that size were indicated in the MPR-20X. 
The OQMG, however, was making a re- 
view to ascertain those items of procure- 
ment for which prime contractors should 
be informed as to tentative plans following 
V-E Day. Revised Master Production 
Schedules were being prepared, and, 
where necessary, contracts were to be 
terminated or rescheduled, thereby put- 
ting into effect the procurement program 
of Period I. 38 

Work-Stoppage Points 

In any revision of the production pro- 
gram, one of the most important problems 
was the determination of the point at 
which work in process of manufacture on 
V Day ought to be stopped. This problem 
had engaged the attention of the OQMG 
quite early. In its first skeleton plan for 
materiel demobilization of 20 December 
1943, the OQMG had laid down general 
principles for determining when it would 
be most economical and feasible to termi- 
nate work in process in reference to certain 
broad categories of Quartermaster items. 

On the other hand, War Department 
policy required that all work in process, 
except as authorized by Headquarters, 
ASF, should be stopped immediately upon 
notice of termination of contract, regard- 

less of the state of completion of the items 
concerned. 39 The OQMG deemed this 
policy too rigid for application to Quarter- 
master items, though it conceded that the 
policy was probably a suitable one to 
apply to military supplies, the continued 
production of which would result in an 
excess of unusable items. 

Despite the arguments that the OQMG 
advanced, War Department policy was 
modified only to the extent that work in 
process might be carried to the next stage 
of production if its removal would be 
destructive to machinery and if the cost to 
remove would be greater than the cost to 
continue. Work in process might also be 
continued to a stage at which it could be 
handled, and at which immediate spoilage 
could be prevented, providing it had a 
definite commercial value. 40 

Most Quartermaster production was of 
such nature that exceptions permitted by 
the ASF to complete stoppage upon termi- 
nation did not apply. Nevertheless, even 
under this restricted policy the OQMG 
found it advantageous to undertake certain 
advance planning, particularly the devel- 
opment of stop-work plans that were 

: ' 7 (1) Memo, Dir of Production Div, ASF, for Chiefs 
of Tech Svs, 2 Mar 44, sub: Preliminary Procurement 
Ping— Special ASP for Mat Demob Ping. (2) 1st Ind, 
Dir of Production Div, ASF, 25 Jul 44, on Memo, Col 
Cound, OQMG, for CG ASF, 22 Jul 44, sub: Com- 
ments on Draft for Completion of Rpt from Mat 
Demob Ping, Production Facilities Plan, Period I. 

18 ( 1 ) Memo, Actg Dir of Mat for TQMG et al., 29 
Mar 45, sub: Mat Demob Ping, Facilities Plan, Period 
I. (2) Memo, Gen Barnes, OQMG, TQMG et al., 4 
Apr 45, same sub. (3) Memo, Gen Corbin, OQMG, 
TQMG et al., 10 May 45, sub: Advice to Prime Con- 
tractors as to Tentative Procurement Plans Following 
V-E Day. 

3,1 Memo, Dir of Production Div, ASF, for Chiefs 
of Tech Svs et al., 1 Apr 44, sub: Mat Demob Plan, 
Period I, Production Div, ASF. 

Gen Corbin to Deputy Dir of Purchases et al., 
OQMG, 1 1 Jul 44, sub: Contract Term Policy to be 
Followed on V Day. 



needed to permit proper clearance of ma- 
chinery. As the OQMG had pointed out 
"when cotton or wool is being spun or 
yarn is being woven, the only practicable 
way of clearing the mills is to complete the 
spinning or weaving of the material in 
process." 41 Such plans for stages at which 
work in process might be stopped — there 
were eleven, for example, in the woolen 
industry — were developed by the Corps in 
co-operation with the War Production 
Board and manufacturers in the woolen 
and worsted, the combed and carded cot- 
ton textile, and the leather footwear indus- 
tries. These agreements constituted a 
major portion of the preplanning accom- 
plished by the QMC in its termination 
activities. 42 

Development of Contract Termination 

Possibly the most important single prob- 
lem of materiel demobilization was that of 
contract termination. In its importance to 
the economic welfare of the nation the 
settlement of terminated war contracts 
was second only to war procurement. The 
very magnitude of the contract termina- 
tion task confronting the War Department 
was indicative of the impact it would have. 
At the end of World War I undelivered 
balances on contracts totaling about 
$4,000,000,000 were canceled. Eight 
months before World War II ended the 
War Department had already terminated 
contracts involving over $15,000,000,000. 
This amount was twice the value of the 
total production of World War I, and the 
real job of contract termination had not 
yet begun. By V-J Day the War Depart- 
ment had initiated contract terminations 
with a commitment value of over $43,000,- 
000,000. 43 

Obviously, contract termination was an 
ever-present operation during the entire 
procurement program of World War II. 
Curtailment of production either by ter- 
minating outstanding prime contracts or 
by reducing the rate of deliveries under 
such contracts might be caused by any one 
of a variety of reasons. Strategic consider- 
ations frequently reduced the need for 
some military items, while the cessation of 
hostilities in any given area was reflected 
in changes in the Army Supply Program. 
New technical developments, such as a 
shrinkproof treatment for cushion-sole 
socks, caused the cancellation of contracts 
for obsolete items. The scarcity of mate- 
rials, the reallocation of critical materials, 
and the use of substitutes, with the con- 
comitant changes in specifications, also 
contributed to the termination of contracts 
during the course of the war. 

Demobilization planning was recog- 
nized early as the key to expeditious settle- 
ment of terminated war contracts and the 
disposition of termination inventory, but 
the solution of the problem of materiel 
demobilization was initially handicapped 
by the lack of an over- all government 
policy, either legislative or administrative. 
It was mid- 1944 before the problem was 
considerably clarified by the centralization 
of authority for the direction of demobili- 
zation in the Office of War Mobilization 

41 Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 1 5 Jun 44, sub: 
Contract Term Po licy to be Fo llowed on V Da y. 

12 (1) See below, IppTTu 1-0 2| . (2) See |Charts l] and[2] 

43 (1) National Archives, Reference Info Cir 24, 
Jan 44, sub: Materials in the National Archives Rela- 
ing to Termination or Modification of Contracts and 
the Settlement of Claims Following the First World 
War, p. 1. (2) Maj Charles E. Shults, Jr., "Contract 
Terminations, "QMR, XXIV (November-December 
1944), 58. (3) Statistics Br, Control Div, ASF, Statis- 
tical Review World War II: A Summary of ASF Ac- 
tivities, n. d., p. 175. 



(OWM), by the publication of the Baruch- 
Hancock report, and by the enactment of 
legislation providing for contract termina- 

Initially, the basic authority for contract 
termination was found in the First War 
Powers Act, approved by the President 
ten days after Pearl Harbor. This author- 
ity was redelegated through the various 
echelons of the War Department until, by 
means of the Quartermaster Supplement 
to Procurement Regulation 15, it reached 
the procuring depots where actual Quar- 
termaster contract terminations occurred. 
Even before Pearl Harbor, War Depart- 
ment contracts had carried a termination 
clause, and by 1943 enough contracts had 
been terminated for one reason or another 
to emphasize the need for scrutinizing the 
government's policy on termination to be 
used at the end of the war. 44 The War De- 
partment had been gaining experience in 
termination procedures since 1941, but 
when it came to the final contract settle- 
ment in which payments were made, the 
department became cautious. It preferred 
to seek legislation to back up specific oper- 
ations, since too much uncertainty existed 
about the legality of negotiated settle- 
ments, and termination personnel feared 
liability in settling contracts and disposing 
of the property involved. 

The first major administrative move to 
unify the government's policy came on 12 
November 1943 with the creation of the 
Joint Contract Termination Board in the 
OWM under the chairmanship of John 
M. Hancock. The board's work consisted 
chiefly of the development, based largely 
upon the experience of the War and Navy 
Departments, of a uniform contract ter- 
mination article for fixed-price, prime sup- 
ply contracts and a statement of the 
principles to be observed in the determina- 

tion of costs. The OWM made the board's 
decisions effective by issuing directives, 
and early in 1944 it authorized the use of 
an approved termination article, which 
had been agreed to by all the agencies 
concerned. 45 Industry, however, did not 
consider an administrative directive on 
such an important matter sufficiently 

In the meantime, Bernard M. Baruch, 
chairman of the War Industries Board in 
World War I, had been added to the staff 
of the OWM as an adviser on postwar 
problems. He and Hancock prepared a re- 
port embodying the ideas, which had been 
developing since 1918, of both industry 
and the procurement agencies of the gov- 
ernment. 48 This report, together with the 
experience of the War and Navy Depart- 
ments, became the basis for the enactment 
of the Contract Settlement Act of 1944, 
which codified or placed Congressional 
sanction on existing War Department 
methods of contract termination settle- 
ment. 47 

Organization for Handling Terminations 

The over- all supervision of contract ter- 
mination operations in the QMC was 
directed by a Contract Termination 
Branch established early in 1944 in the 

44 The old War Department Supply Contract 1 
of September 1941 had a termination article. Subse- 
quently, after some experience with terminations had 
been gained, changes were made, and the Standard 
War Department Termination for Convenience Ar- 
ticle was adopted in October 1942. Under it thou- 
sands of contracts were terminated. 

45 Directive 1, 8 Jan 44. 

46 Rpt. Baruch and Hancock to James F. Byrnes, 
Dirof OWM, 15 Feb +4, sub: War and Postwar Ad- 
justment Policy. 

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Procurement Division, OQMG. 48 It car- 
ried out the policies and procedures devel- 
oped by the Readjustment Division in the 
Office of the Director of Materiel, ASF. It 
made monthly reports to that division, 
periodically checked the progress of termi- 
nations and settlements to eliminate 
unreasonable delays, and issued instruc- 
tions to the depots on procedures and 
interpretation of general policies pre- 
scribed by The Quartermaster General 
and higher authority. In addition, the 
branch assisted in arranging training pro- 
grams for depot personnel and contractors 
on contract termination policy. 

From an organization of three officers 
and three civilians the branch was ex- 
panded into a staff of twelve officers and 
fifteen civilians that assumed responsibility 
for directing and administering the termi- 
nation of about 20,000 contracts, involving 
almost $1,500,000,000 commitment value 
of the terminated portion of the contracts 
and $300,000,000 worth of termination 
inventory. 49 Attorneys, accountants, per- 
sons with administrative experience in 
various fields, and individuals who had 
previously been engaged in the textile, 
steel, or other industries were selected so 
that their varied business experience might 
be drawn upon to carry out the functions 
of the Contract Termination Branch. By 
the end of the first fiscal year after V-J 
Day, with its mission for the most part 
accomplished, the organization had lost its 
status as a branch and its personnel had 
dwindled to two civilians responsible for 
the supervision of the remaining termina- 
tion activities. 

Of the seventeen depots involved in pro- 
curement operations, five major depots — 
Boston, Chicago, Jeffersonville, Jersey 
City, and Philadelphia — carried the bulk 
of contract termination work. Contract 

termination branches were later set up in 
the other twelve smaller procuring depots. 
Since curtailment of industrial production 
of Quartermaster items was their first con- 
cern in demobilization planning, the 
depots had concentrated on contract ter- 
mination activities. To promote the maxi- 
mum efficiency in termination operations, 
the OQMG early in 1944 effected the 
greatest possible standardization in depot 
organization and procedures for contract 
termination. s0 Significantly, termination 
organizations were set up as separate enti- 
ties, and purchasing contracting officers in 
the depots were not responsible for per- 
forming dual functions, that is, buying and 
terminating, which required different 
points of view that might conflict with 
each other. Termination activities neces- 
sitated an increase in personnel at the five 
procuring depots from about 400 at the 
beginning of the program to a peak of 
3,200 by V-J Day when mass terminations 
occurred. A year later the number of per- 
sonnel had been reduced to about 200. 51 

Termination Procedure 

The Contract Settlement Act imposed 
no new procedures in contract termination 
and enunciated no new objectives. Termi- 

18 OQMG OO 25-43B, 1 1 Jan 44, sub: Contract 
Termination. The Contract Termination Branch was 
activated on 1 February, taking over functions per- 
formed previously by the Contract Modification 

49 (1) Procurement Policy Br, Sup Div, OQMG, 
Summary Rpt of Contract Termination Activities 
194 3-46, p. 1 . (Hereafter cited as Summary Rpt.) (2) 
See |Table 1.1 

5(1 (1) Dir of Procurement Div to Deputy Dirs for 
TQMG, 2 Mar 44, sub: Orgn and Procedure for 
Handling Contract Termination Within OQMG and 
at Depot Level. (2) Ltr, TQMG to CG PQMD, 23 
Mar 44, sub: Standard Orgn and Procedures for Con- 
tract Termination Br. 

51 Summary Rpt, pp. 13-15. 



nation claims were still to be settled fairly 
and quickly; termination inventory was to 
be cleared from war plants promptly; and 
adequate interim financing was to be pro- 
vided for war contractors pending settle- 
ments. The Joint Termination Regulation 
(JTR) issued by the War and Navy De- 
partments provided the instrumentality 
through which speedy and equitable settle- 
ments might be reached, while at the same 
time the government's interests were safe- 
guarded. 52 

In accordance with the provisions of the 
JTR, The Quartermaster General could 
terminate any prime contract under his 
administration. The uniform contract ter- 
mination article developed by the Joint 
Contract Termination Board was included 
in every fixed-price contract — the type 
most widely used by the QMC. It was not 
used in contracts of less than $50,000, in 
those of less than $500,000 providing for 
delivery within six months, nor in service 
contracts. A different article was used in 
cost-plus-fixed fee contracts. The termina- 
tion article provided for the discontinuance 
of all work upon notification by the con- 
tracting officer, both on the part of con- 
tractors and subcontractors, and imme- 
diate transfer to the government of title to 
all partially completed and completed 
supplies, work in process, materials, fabri- 
cated parts, plans, drawings, and any 
information acquired or produced by the 
contractor for the performance of the con- 
tract. The contractors could retain any 
accrued supplies at an agreed price or sell 
them upon direction of the contracting of- 
ficer, crediting the government for their 
value. The article also provided for pay- 
ment as well as for disposal of inventories 
involved. 53 

When, during the course of the war, 
cutbacks were necessitated by changes in 

the Army Supply Program, The Quarter- 
master General sent a teletype to the depot 
directing that a given number of units of 
an item be terminated, an action that later 
was confirmed by a change in the procure- 
ment directive. In deciding which con- 
tracts to terminate, the depot contracting 
officer took into consideration various fac- 
tors governing the distribution of cutbacks. 
A primary consideration was the retention 
of facilities with capacity to produce 
known and contingent future require- 
ments. Where other factors were equal, 
those contracts affording lower unit costs 
to the government were retained. Facilities 
that could be used for other war produc- 
tion or for essential civilian production 
were released in preference to terminating 
war contracts at plants not readily adapt- 
able to such production. Upon the defeat 
of Germany the contracting officer had to 
consider giving first priority of release from 
war production to privately owned plants 
not normally engaged in production of a 
military character in order to facilitate 
their reconversion to civilian production. 
These factors and many others had from 
the beginning been considered by Quar- 
termaster depot contracting officers in the 
selection of contracts to be terminated. 54 

Once the decision had been made, a 
telegram, followed by a registered letter, 
was sent to the contractor, constituting his 
official notice to stop work. This letter 
notice of termination was given wide dis- 
tribution within the depot since every 
branch of the depot was affected. The fis- 
cal division, for example, was required to 

52 First issued on 1 November 1944. the JTR was 
subsequently amended comprehensively and issued as 
JTR — Revision 1 on 20 April 1945. 

51 JTR— Revision 1, par. 931, 20 Apr 45. 

54 (1) Memo, CG SOS for TQMG ei at., 26 Oct 42, 
sub: Revision in Sup Contracts. (2) Memo, TQMG 
for Production Div, SOS, 6 Nov 42, same sub. 



revise its estimates of funds; the inspection 
branch had to see that the contractor 
stopped work; the government -furnished 
materials branch had to supervise the re- 
call of all government-furnished materials; 
and the commercial warehouse officer had 
to provide the necessary storage space. 

Since War Department policy called for 
settlement of a terminated contract within 
sixty days, the work involved had to be 
done at high speed. Within a few days 
after the letter had been sent, a negotiator 
assigned to the case arranged for an initial 
conference with the contractor. As many 
technical people as the negotiator thought 
necessary participated, and such matters 
as the reasons for termination, the con- 
tractor's rights under the termination ar- 
ticle, the nature and status of each subcon- 
tract, and the need for interim financing 
were covered in detail. Interim financing 
was the financial aid the government gave 
to a contractor during the period between 
the date of termination and the date of 
final settlement of a terminated contract. 
Interim financing, however, was not a 
matter of major concern to Quartermaster 
suppliers at any time during the war. By 
V-E Day there had been almost no appli- 
cations for advance payments. Not until 
after V-J Day did these payments become 
appreciable in amount. Then, in August 
1945, partial payments of approximately 
$500,000 were made against contracts 
totaling about a billion dollars. 55 

In the course of the conference with the 
contractor, the negotiator and his assist- 
ants established a schedule that the con- 
tractor could meet for taking an inventory, 
and they discussed clearance of plant, dis- 
posal of inventory, claims from subcon- 
tractors, preparation of a settlement 
proposal, and final settlement. To a large 
extent the termination of a contract de- 

pended on the prompt removal and dis- 
posal of completed articles, component 
parts, work in process, raw materials, and 
equipment in the possession of the con- 
tractor at the time of cancellations. The 
clearance of his plant was of immediate 
concern to the contractor whether he 
wanted to convert to other war work or 
essential civilian production during the 
war or return to civilian production after 
the war. At the time his contract was ter- 
minated the contractor was compelled to 
stop all work under the contract. His pro- 
duction line was stopped, his labor was 
idle, his machines were cluttered with 
work in process, and, in many instances, 
all of his available factory space was occu- 
pied by raw materials and purchased parts 
allocable to the contract. Conversion was 
impossible until the plant had been 
cleared of termination inventory. Clear- 
ance was equally important from the gov- 
ernment's point of view because during the 
war materials no longer required to fulfill 
one particular contract had to be diverted 
to other war production. 

The preparation of an inventory by the 
contractor was the first step in property 
disposal. It was the policy of the govern- 
ment to encourage contractors to retain 
termination inventory or dispose of it 
themselves, providing the government had 
no specific requirement for the property. 
The QMC disposed of government-fur- 
nished materials unless it had specifically 
authorized their retention. Even then, 
such materials might be sold to a contrac- 
tor if he needed them to complete work in 
process that he intended to retain. While 
an inspector made a spot check to deter- 

55 (1) Contract Termination Br, Procurement Div, 
OQMG, Monthly Rpt of Contract Termination Ac- 
tivities, August 1945. (2) See JTR — Revision 1, Sec. 
Ill, Pts. 2-6, 20 Apr 45. 



mine the accuracy of the contractor's in- 
ventory, personnel of the depot property 
disposal section, who were merchandisers 
and salesmen experienced in particular 
items, assisted the contractor in making 
plans for disposal. They were expected to 
use ingenuity in devising methods that 
could be suggested to prospective buyers 
for converting to civilian uses materials 
developed exclusively for military use. If 
after these steps had been taken termina- 
tion inventory remained at the plants, a list 
of materials was to be sent to the OQMG 
for determination of its possible use else- 
where in the Corps. In the event no such 
need existed, the availability of the inven- 
tory was supposed to be brought to the at- 
tention of other War Department agencies, 
but in actual practice the sixty-day clear- 
ance period allowed by the Contract 
Settlement Act permitted little time for 
such efforts. 

If at the end of thirty days, termination 
inventory had not been disposed of by the 
contractor, the OQMG initiated steps to 
remove the property from the contractor's 
plant or otherwise take title. An agreement 
might be made with the contractor to ex- 
tend the removal period in order to allow 
the depot time for further attempts to dis- 
pose of the material. If no agreement could 
be made, the Corps had to provide for re- 
moval or storage. Some items in termina- 
tion inventory, such as stockpile and war 
reserve materials, required special treat- 
ment and plans had to be made for their 
proper handling. All other materials, how- 
ever, were declared surplus to the regional 
office of the Reconstruction Finance Cor- 
poration (RFC) having jurisdiction over 
the area in which the materials to be 
stored were located, and the OQMG asked 
the RFC for shipping instructions. If that 
agency could not provide shipping instruc- 

tions within the sixty-day disposal period 
fixed for plant clearance, then the OQMG 
became responsible for providing them. 

When it became apparent that pro- 
longed storage would be necessary before 
final disposition and that space was not 
available in government facilities, the 
OQMG negotiated a storage agreement 
with the war contractor or provided stor- 
age in commercial warehouses. Account- 
ability for such stored property was vested 
in accountable property officers appointed 
at the procuring depots. 

There was no set time in the procedure 
when the proposal for settlement had to be 
prepared. It might be sent in when the in- 
ventory was filed or, depending upon the 
complexity of the case, it might be made 
up in the period between the submission of 
the inventory and its disposal. The con- 
tractor was responsible for preparing the 
proposal for settlement, but he could call 
upon the contracting officer's staff for aid 
in determining what costs to include in 
submitting the claims for payment due 
him because of cancellation. When his pro- 
posal was received in the depot, account- 
ants of the cost and price analysis branch 
examined it and determined whether an 
office review would be sufficient or whether 
a field examination would be necessary. In 
either case they prepared a report that was 
submitted with the proposal to the negoti- 
ator. He could then negotiate the proposed 
final settlement, which was tentative until 
reviewed. Depending on the amount of the 
payment involved, the settlement agree- 
ment was subject to review and recom- 
mendations by the depot review board, the 
OQMG Settlement Review Committee, or 
the review board of the ASF. 

The objective was to provide war con- 
tractors with fair compensation for their 
termination claims as expeditiously as pos- 



sible in order to facilitate maximum war 
production during the war and later to ex- 
pedite reconversion from war to civilian 
production. Settlement might be accom- 
plished by means of a negotiated agree- 
ment, by use of a formula method, or by 
any combination of the two methods. The 
OQMG preferred the negotiated settle- 
ment, a method favored by industry and 
the procuring agencies of the government 
generally. It was the only way in which 
settlements could be expedited, since this 
method permitted the use of independent 
judgment by the contracting officer and 
considerably more flexibility in adaptation 
to specific problems. Only where a nego- 
tiated agreement was impossible did the 
contracting officer resort to settling a claim 
by determining by formula the amount 
due the contractor. If dissatisfied, the con- 
tractor had the legal right to appeal to the 
Appeal Board of the Office of Contract 
Settlement, or he could bring suit against 
the government in the Court of Claims or 
in a United States District Court. 

Since a settlement was made in accord- 
ance with the terms of a contract, the 
agreement was a legal document that pro- 
vided for the payment of the agreed 
amount. Hence the legal branch of the 
depot prepared all such supplemental 
agreements, which were signed by the con- 
tractor and the contracting officer, thereby 
becoming the authority for actual pay- 
ment. The final step in termination settle- 
ment was taken when the contractor 
forwarded invoices to the depot. These, 
together with the supplemental agree- 
ment, were sent to the fiscal division, and 
the voucher for payment was prepared. 
When this voucher was given priority, 
payment could be made within four days 
after receipt of the invoice. To all intents 
and purposes, the case was then closed. 

Advance Planning for Mass 

While current terminations furnished 
Quartermaster contracting officers with 
practical experience, one of the most 
urgent tasks of the OQMG in preparing 
for demobilization was planning in ad- 
vance for the wholesale terminations that 
would inevitably follow the defeat of 
Japan. The Contract Termination Branch 
was responsible for such advance plan- 
ning. It made every effort to anticipate the 
problems that would occur and "to arrive 
at some workable formula for terminating 
the contracts for all the major commodi- 
ties purchased by the Quartermaster 
Corps." 56 

Certain advantages accrued from pre- 
planning. It speeded the transition from 
terminated war production to other war 
production on V-E Day and to civilian 
production upon the final cessation of hos- 
tilities. It made for prompt diversion of 
personnel, inventory, and facilities to other 
war production or civilian production, and 
it also facilitated interim financing, plant 
clearance, and prompt settlement of termi- 
nation claims, thereby lessening the likeli- 
hood of unemployment. In working out 
preliminary agreements, contractors be- 
came more familiar with the information 
requirements of the government and fre- 
quently were able to improve their or- 
ganizations, records, and facilities for ter- 
mination. In the meantime, the OQMG 
profited by the development of more ac- 
curate field information, which could be 
used in over-all planning. Even when it 
did not eventuate in formal, final agree- 

56 Contract Termination Br to Control Br, F&L 
Div, OQMG, 1 1 Mar 4r4, sub: Termination of Con- 



ment, pretermination planning was highly 
valuable in itself as training. 

Preplanning included three types of 
preparations: (1) discussion with contrac- 
tors regarding anticipated terminations 
and the preparation by contractors of in- 
ternal termination plans and procedures; 
(2) tentative understandings or informal 
arrangements embodied in memoranda 
not binding upon the government or the 
contractor; and (3) formal, binding pre- 
termination-settlement agreements cover- 
ing elements of the termination settlement. 
Various specific matters — stop-work points, 
methods of taking inventory, factory over- 
head and general and administrative ex- 
penses, starting-load costs, and tooling ex- 
penses — could be made the subject of 
either informal arrangements or binding 
settlement agreements. 

In one sense, almost all the activities of 
contract termination, until V-E Day at 
least, consisted of planning, but until the 
middle of 1944 such planning did not in- 
volve a program to settle many points in 
advance of termination. Then, based on 
the broader latitude permitted by the 
Contract Settlement Act, a pretermina- 
tion planning program was initiated in 
the QMC, reaching its peak in November 
and December. 57 The plan proposed by 
Headquarters, ASF, in July called for 
"predetermination of some part or the 
whole of the price to be paid by the 
Government for the right to cancel the 
contract at any given stage of completion" 
and offered suggestions as to the methods 
of determining fixed charges according to 
the general type of costs to be taken into 
account. 58 It was anticipated that this at- 
tempt to simplify procedure by prede- 
termining termination allowances in the 
original contract at the time it was 
awarded or immediately thereafter by 

supplemental agreement would afford the 
government relief from some of the burden 
of taking title to materials allocable to a 
contract and, at the same time, relieve 
both the government and the contractor of 
the necessity for extensive posttermination 
accounting, audits, and negotiations. 

The program began in a tentative and 
experimental way. Among the early agree- 
ments presented for approval by the 
OQMG and the first consummated by the 
War Department was that negotiated be- 
tween the Botany Worsted Mills, Inc., and 
the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot on 
a current contract for 18-ounce wool serge. 
This agreement, acceptable to both the 
contractor and the depot, was established 
on a unit-cost basis, with an inventory to 
be taken upon termination — a procedure 
which it was estimated would take only 
two days, would protect both the govern- 
ment and the contractor, and would elimi- 
nate the necessity for any options. 59 Using 
this agreement as a test case, Headquar- 
ters, ASF, submitted it to the Director of 
Contract Settlement and to the Surplus 
War Property Administrator for approval 
of the principles used. Certain adjustments 
were made and by mid-September the 
OQMG forwarded information concern- 
ing this agreement to other depots, author- 
izing the extension of the principles in- 
volved to similar contracts. Whenever 
available data permitted a reasonable 
business forecast, the same type of agree- 
ment was authorized for use in the textile, 

57 Contract Termination Br, OQMG, Progress Rpt 
of Contract Termination Activities, 1944, p. 9. 

■« Memo, Asst Dir of Mat, ASF, for TQMG, 24 Jul 
44. sub: Experimental Program for Simplifying Ter- 
mination Procedures and Predetermining Termina- 
tion Allowances. 

5S Memo, Dir of Procurement Div, OQMG, for CG 
ASF, 31 Aug 44, sub cited n. 58. 



clothing, and related fields. 60 By the end of 
September, enough experience had been 
gained so that a general policy could be 
laid down officially covering many aspects 
of pretermination agreements. 61 

Co-ordination of Pretermination 
Planning Activities 

As pretermination planning progressed, 
duplication of effort among depots became 
apparent. To eliminate this duplication, 
when more than one depot dealt with the 
same contractor, the OQMG assigned all 
pretermination activity to the depot hav- 
ing the principal contract with the con- 
tractor and, therefore, chief interest in his 
production. Similarly, where two or more 
technical services were purchasing a por- 
tion of a contractor's production it was de- 
sirable to have the contractor do his termi- 
nation planning with the service having 
the primary interest. The OQMG directed 
its depot personnel to determine this fact 
on first approaching the contractor and to 
utilize data compiled for another service. 62 

Efforts were also made to co-ordinate 
the contract termination activities of the 
War and Navy Departments. These had at 
first been concentrated on developing a 
uniform termination article, but with the 
passage of the Contract Settlement Act 
and the issue of the JTR on 1 November 
1944, the two departments undertook a 
closer degree of collaboration. Co-ordina- 
tion was vigorously pressed through the 
consolidated termination program, com- 
pany-wide settlements, and local termina- 
tion co-ordination committees. 

The consolidated termination program 
was established by the War and Navy De- 
partments for selected contractors, who 
were assigned to a particular service of the 
War Department or office of the Navy De- 

partment in order to eliminate duplica- 
tions in field accounting reviews of settle- 
ment proposals or in disposition of termi- 
nation inventory. 83 The special feature of 
the program was the acceptance by the 
department of the accounting reports and 
property disposal decisions of the other, 
and the reliance by contractors upon the 
work of government personnel represent- 
ing both departments. Illustrative of con- 
solidated termination was the settlement 
by the Jeffersonville Quartermaster Depot 
of contracts involving materials-handling 
equipment and spare parts manufactured 
for both the Army and the Navy. The 
depot made the settlement agreement and 
handled disposal of inventory, although 
payments were made individually by the 
War and Navy Departments. 64 

Company-wide settlements contem- 
plated settlement by the service with the 
predominant interest of all termination 
claims of selected contractors whether of 
the Army or the Navy and whether under 
prime contracts or subcontracts. A study of 
such activity had been initiated by the 
Joint Contract Termination Board at the 

60 (1) [1st Ind], Dir of Procurement Div, OQMG, 
to CG PQMD, 14 Sep 44. (2) Ltr, Dir of Procurement 
Div, OQMG, to CG JQMD, 16 Sep 44, sub cited n. 

61 ASF Cir 325, Sec. IV, 28 Sep 44, sub: PR 1 5 


62 (1) Ltr, Chief of Contract Termination Br, 
OQMG, to CG BQMD H al.,\6 Nov 44, sub: Assign- 
ment of QM Contractors to Specific QM Depots for 
Pretermination Activities. (2) Ltr, Dir of Procurement 
Div, OQMG, to CG BQMD el aL, 7 Sep 44, sub: Ping 
Termination Procedures with Large Prime Con- 

63 (1) JTR— Revision 1, Sec. VIII, Pt. 2, 20 Apr 45. 
(2) See also ASF Cir 375, Sec. VI, 4 Oct 45, sub: Con- 
tract Termination, 

61 (1) Ltr, Chief of BuSandA, Navy Dept, to 
TQMG, 15 Feb 46, sub: Administration of Termina- 
tion Proceedings with Clark Equipment Co. (2) Ltr, 
JQMD to TQMG, 9 Aug 46, sub: Final Agreement 
with Clark Equipment Co. 



beginning of 1944. 65 The OQMG felt that 
the resulting plan would have only limited 
application in the Corps and that it would 
be "the exception and not the rule," since 
the problems involved were far less acute 
in the QMC than in other services. Quar- 
termaster items, for example, either were, 
or closely approached, standard com- 
mercial items and could be readily dis- 
posed of in the civilian trade, while sub- 
contracting was a relatively small problem 
in the procurement of clothing, equipage, 
and general supplies. Termination of sub- 
sistence contracts was omitted entirely 
from consideration since, according to the 
Director of Procurement, there would be 
virtually no contract termination problem 
"for reasons too obvious to enumerate." 
In fact, in the course of conducting its con- 
tract termination activities after the war 
ended, the QMC was involved in only two 
company-wide settlements, both of which 
were handled for the Corps by the AAF. 66 
Where it was not feasible or desirable to 
pool personnel under the consolidated ter- 
mination program or the company-wide 
settlement plan, a certain measure of co- 
ordination by the field representatives of 
the War and Navy Departments was ob- 
tained through the establishment of local 
termination co-ordination committees in 
major war production centers. Twenty of 
them were established with offices in 
twenty-seven large cities, covering all areas 
of the United States. They acted as clear- 
ing houses for local termination activities 
and made possible a free interchange of in- 
formation between members. They co- 
ordinated the activities of the services in 
training contractors in termination mat- 
ters, in disseminating public information 
on termination procedures, and in making 
advance preparations with contractors for 
termination. These committees also recom- 

mended to the War and Navy Depart- 
ments the designation of contractors for 
the consolidated termination program. 
The QMC was represented on eleven of 
these committees and held the chairman- 
ship of the Philadelphia committee. 67 

Impact of Developments in the ETO 

Stimulated by the conviction that the 
war in Europe would end shortly, the 
major Quartermaster procuring depots 
made strenuous efforts in 1944 to accom- 
plish as much of the preplanning program 
as possible. By the end of 1944 many con- 
tractors had been interviewed, a few in- 
formal understandings had been reached, 
and one pretermination settlement agree- 
ment had been approved. This activity 
was just beginning to gain momentum 
when the Battle of the Bulge in December 
called for renewed procurement to refill 
supply pipelines. Personnel who were be- 
ing trained for termination activities were 
suddenly reassigned to other branches of 
depot procurement divisions, with the re- 
sult that, in some instances, the termina- 
tion organization was almost completely 

85 Memo, Dir of Readj Div, ASF, for TQMG, 15 
Jan 44, sub: Proposal for Over-all Company Settle- 

ss (1) Memo, Dir of Procurement DLv, OQMG, for 
CG ASF, 29 Jan 44, sub: Proposal for Over-all Com- 
pany Settlement. (2) Memo, Col E. De Treville Ellis, 
OQMG, for Readj Div, ASF, 25 Mar 44, sub: Over- 
all Settlement of Terminated Contracts. (3) Ltr, 
ATSC, Eastern District, Office of Resident Adjust- 
ment Off, to TQMG, 28 Jan 46, sub: Supplemental 
Settlement Agreement with Aluminum Co. of 
America. (4) Ltr, Same to TQMG, 30 Jan 46, sub: 
Transmittal of Supplemental Agreement with Rey- 
nolds Metals Co. 

,iT (1) Memo, Dir of Readj Div, ASF, for TQMG 
et al., 25 Sep 44, sub: Co-ordinated Termination 
Program. (2) JTR— Revision 1, Sec. VIII, Pt. 3. 20 
Apr 45. (3) Contract Termination Br, Procurement 
Div, OQMG, Progress Rpt of Contract Termination 
Activities, 1944, p. 9. 



dispersed. Although in the spring of 1945 
there was a general resumption of the pro- 
gram, the progress in pretermination plan- 
ning was temporarily halted. 68 

Not only were personnel arrangements 
dislocated but also the nature of agree- 
ments into which contractors were willing 
to enter was shaped by developments in 
the European Theater of Operations 
(ETO). The experience of the Boston De- 
pot offers one example. When the depot 
first surveyed its termination problems, it 
anticipated that the transition from a war 
to a peacetime economy could easily be 
made since, for the most part, shoe con- 
tractors had continued to handle a large 
volume of civilian business concurrently 
with their military contracts. 69 Initially in 
preplanning, most contractors were in- 
terested in a guarantee from The Quarter- 
master General that all work in process 
would be completed, and this problem 
seemed to be solved by a system of re- 
scheduling and projecting deliveries fur- 
ther into the future. Later, when process- 
ing beyond immediate military require- 
ments was forbidden, the emphasis in 
developing pretermination agreements 
was placed on establishing stop-work 
points and obtaining offers for all inven- 
tory from contractors as an aid to quick 
property disposal. Contractors were disin- 
clined to make offers for termination in- 
ventory, however, since they were still 
interested only in assurances that work in 
process would be completed. Early in 1945 
this attitude changed, for during the clos- 
ing months of 1944 the depot procured the 
largest quantities of shoes of all kinds ever 
requisitioned in any comparable period of 
the entire war. As a result, shoe contrac- 
tors were not longer satisfied with assur- 
ance of completion of work in process nor 
with mere advance notice of termination. 

With their entire plants tied up with mili- 
tary production, they wanted some provi- 
sion made for a conversion period, some 
assurance of continuance of production 
under Army contracts for a sufficient pe- 
riod to assure orderly rearrangement of 
the productive processes from wartime to 
peacetime orders. The preplanning pro- 
gram at the Boston Depot, the greater part 
of which was accomplished during April 
and May 1945, failed to develop any pre- 
termination settlement agreements that 
were applied on V-J Day, although it did 
make informal arrangements with twelve 
firms participating in the depot footwear 
procurement program, all of which cov- 
ered stop-work points that helped ease ter- 
mination proceedings. 

Preplanning Program in Operation 

While the preplanning program did not 
result in final settlement agreements on 
most Quartermaster contracts and, in fact, 
was never even applied to subsistence con- 
tracts, nevertheless such agreements and 
informal arrangements as were made did 
facilitate contract settlements after V-J 
Day. Depot planning covered a wide 
variety of Quartermaster commodities 
procured by contracts with many manu- 
facturers, but one illustration is sufficient 
to show the effectiveness of sound pre- 

The case in point concerns action taken 
by the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot 

014 (1) Deputy Dir for Contract Adjustments to Fid 
Progress Br, OP&G Div, OQMG, 13 Feb 45, sub: 
Pretermination Ping Program Conf. (2) Ltr, Dir of 
Procurement Div, OQMG, to CGJQMD, 16 Apr 
45, sub: Pretermination Ping Activity. 

68 For a more detailed discussion see Helen R. 
Brooks, Problems of Shoe Procurement: A Study in 
Procurement at the Boston Quartermaster Depot 
During World War II (BQMD hist monograph, 10 
May 45), pp. 397ff, Hist Br. OQMG. 



to ease the termination of contracts with 
the textile industry. It was definitely to the 
advantage of the depot that reconversion 
in the textile industry involved no major 
problems of retooling or other radical 
changes in the shift from wartime to 
peacetime production. There were few un- 
usual or special types of termination 
charges and only negligible charges for 
special facilities. Production costs were 
generally well established in the textile in- 
dustry, and therefore no particular costing 
problems were encountered. Pretermina- 
tion agreements could be made to cover 
numerous points, such as retention offers 
for termination inventory, rates of general 
and administrative overhead costs, and 
similar problems. 70 

The point of departure for all pretermi- 
nation planning at the Philadelphia De- 
pot was the agreement with the Botany 
Worsted Mills, Inc. From that point depot 
planning progressed through retention of- 
fers to the development of agreements on 
stop- work points that were industry-wide 
in their application to the woolen, worsted, 
and cotton textile industries. The question 
of retention sales of termination inventory 
was the biggest problem in the depot's 
planning program. When manufacturers 
made retention offers, the distribution of 
end items was the main consideration. 
The large woolen and cotton houses had 
potential sales outlets that the smaller 
manufacturers did not possess. The larger 
the organization, therefore, the better the 
retention offers made. To get all mills, 
both small and large, in line on certain re- 
tention values was a tremendous problem 
involving many factors, among them the 
degree of integration of the mills. 71 Agree- 
ment on retention values was the goal to- 
ward which the depot worked in its pre- 
planning program. 

The stop-work plan proved of great 
value both to the Army and to industry. It 
was timesaving and enabled the mills to 
proceed to a given point without the ne- 
cessity of working out further agreements 
with the QMC. The flexibility of the plan 
also permitted the OQMG to direct proc- 
essing of certain standard items beyond 
the designated stopping points, either be- 
cause these were still needed in consider- 
able volume by the armies of occupation 
or because the QMC found it desirable to 
anticipate requirements rather than stop 
all production and place new contracts 
later when the mills had returned to civil- 
ian production. 

Once stop-work stages were established 
for the woolen and cotton industries, the 
QMC had to determine the cost at each 
stop-work stage. This required a knowl- 
edge of the contractor's commitments. 
Costs could be arrived at more easily in the 
woolen than in the cotton industry, for 
wool was less speculative in nature than 
cotton, a commodity that is traded in daily 
on the exchange. Cotton manufacturers 
customarily traded in futures, agreeing to 
take delivery at a later date on a certain 
number of bales of cotton, and they ob- 
tained a large measure of protection by 
hedging. 72 To protect the cotton manufac- 
turer from loss on termination, the Phila- 
delphia Depot worked out an agreement 

70 1st Ind, Donnell K. Wolverton, Chief of Legal Br, 
PQMD, 17 Dec 46, on Ltr, Harold W. Thatcher, 
Chief of Hist Sec, OQMG, to CG PQMD, 26 Nov 46, 
sub: Preparation of Hist Account of Demob Period. 

71 An integrated mill is one that starts with the raw 
material and runs its production through to the 
finished fabric. A partially integrated mill might begin 
with the yarn and carry its production to the finished 

72 Hedging is the practice of buying or selling com- 
modity futures to counterbalance an existing position 
in the trade market, thus avoiding the risk of unfore- 
seen fluctuations in price. 



whereby the contractor was allowed to se- 
lect the date after termination that he 
wished to use as the determining date in 
the price of cotton. The depot then gave 
him the difference between the average 
10-spot-market price the day after the 
date of the award of the contract and the 
date after the termination on which he 
wanted to settle his cotton commitments. 73 
In other words, he was reimbursed on the 
basis of the difference between the value 
of cotton on the date of the contract and 
on the date of termination. 74 

The textile industry was covered by 
stop-work agreements that went into effect 
automatically when V-J Day brought mass 
terminations at the Philadelphia Depot. 
During the course of its planning program 
the depot had prepared 260 approved pre- 
termination settlement agreements with 
wool manufacturers and contractors in 
other textiles and in the clothing industry; 
of these, 98 were applied after V-J Day. 75 
Under these agreements termination 
claims were settled promptly. 

The failure to include subsistence in the 
preplanning program at the Chicago 
Quartermaster Depot had unfortunate re- 
sults. Although the negotiators at the de- 
pot were called upon to handle the termi- 
nation settlement of subsistence contracts 
for both perishable and nonperishable 
foods, they found it difficult to appraise 
the changes that might occur because 
subsistence was not included in the Special 
Army Supply Program. Furthermore, 
aside from a few dehydrated products and 
special rations, the Subsistence Division, 
OQMG, did not anticipate any termina- 
tion of contracts for nonperishable sub- 
sistence. Generally speaking, it was as- 
sumed that the Army "could eat its way 
out" of subsistence stocks. Since the sub- 
sistence personnel both at the OQMG and 

at the depot felt that there would be no 
particular problem in terminating food 
contracts, efforts to promote a pretermina- 
tion program for subsistence met with re- 
sistance. No preplanning was therefore 

The end of the war in Europe resulted 
in no large-scale termination of subsistence 
contracts, partly because of the lack of in- 
formation about stocks on hand, and 
partly because of the anticipated require- 
ments for a long campaign against the 
Japanese. During May and June of 1945 
the OQMG did stress the need for prepar- 
ing for mass terminations, and the Con- 
tract Termination Branch became ex- 
tremely critical of the lack of advance 
planning in the subsistence field by the de- 
pot. 76 The latter justified its course of 
action by pointing to its heavy work load 
for procurement, which was not appreci- 
ably slowed after V-E Day, and the conse- 
quent temporary reassignment of termina- 
tion personnel to buying activity. 

V-J Day occurred before any planning 
could be accomplished, and the Chicago 
Depot was ill prepared for the avalanche 
of terminations of subsistence contracts 
that followed. Little contractor education 
and no pretermination settlements had 
been accomplished, nor were the depot's 
personnel versed in the problems involved 

7/1 By totaling the prices for the ten different cotton 
markets of the South an average sale price for the day, 
as well as the high and low prices, is obtained. 

74 Intervs, OQMG historian with Charles Galla- 
gher, negotiator at PQMD, NYPO, 2 Jan 47, and with 
William A. Dittie, negotiator, PQMD, 16 Jan 47. 

75 1st Ind, Donnell K. Wolverton, Chief of Legal Br, 
PQMD, 17 Dec 46, on Ltr, Harold W. Thatcher, 
Chief of Hist Sec, OQMG, to CG PQMD, 26 Nov 46, 
sub: Preparation of Hist Account of Demob Period. 

76 For a detailed account see Marion Massen, Cen- 
tral Procurement Operations at the Chicago Quarter- 
master Depot: The Demobilization Period (CQMD 
hist monograph, Jun 46), Hist Br, OQMG. (Hereafter 
cited as Massen, Central Procurement Operations.) 



in the termination of subsistence contracts. 
Consequently they were not ready to as- 
sist and advise contractors. Even if the de- 
pot had received advance notices of ap- 
proaching terminations, difficulties would 
have developed, for the JTR did not make 
adequate provisions for terminating sub- 
sistence contracts, especially those cover- 
ing perishable foods. As a result, negotia- 
tors were required to interpret the JTR on 
the basis of their judgment and business 
experience. The termination of contracts 
for dehydrated foods, for example, in- 
volved thousands of acres of crops and 
hundreds of farmers who were unfamiliar 
with the JTR and their rights under the 
Contract Settlement Act. 

Subsistence contractors were unpre- 
pared to handle problems pertaining to 
raw materials, or to finance themselves. 
Many dehydrators incurred delays in the 
handling of the raw materials claimed 
under their terminated contracts because 
of the inexperience of growers in the 
proper packing of fresh vegetables for sale 
through commercial channels. Dehy- 
drators and growers were not familiar 
with the proper storage of certain types of 
raw materials, a situation made more 
acute by the general inadequacy of the 
facilities for storing perishable items until 
arrangements could be made for their dis- 
position. Contractors also experienced dif- 
ficulty in financing farmers. The latter 
made deliveries of raw materials during 
the harvesting season when the depot was 
restricted from making shipments into 
commercial channels. Financial difficul- 
ties developed when storage could not be 
furnished promptly. The JTR made pro- 
vision for partial payments, but unfortu- 
nately the delay in receiving funds under 
this regulation made it inapplicable in 
this situation. As a result of depot efforts, 

banking institutions offered credit and as- 
sistance to prime contractors to enable 
them to harvest and store the crops. The 
lack of knowledge on the part of the con- 
tractors, combined with the inadequacy of 
the JTR in reference to subsistence, con- 
tributed to the difficulties of settling sub- 
sistence contracts. Subsistence, then, was 
a field in which planning for termination 
activities was inadequate. 

Development of Training Programs 

A program of education and training in 
termination procedures for both Quarter- 
master personnel and Quartermaster con- 
tractors supplemented the Corps' efforts 
to reduce the work load on V-E and V-J 
Days by negotiation of pretermination 
agreements. The immediate task was to 
acquire and train the additional civilians, 
enlisted men, and officers needed by the 
procuring depots and to make certain that 
personnel so allotted were used to admin- 
ister contract termination. They were, first 
of all, to handle actual contract termina- 
tion cases, and secondly, to engage in pre- 
termination planning activities. They 
could be assigned to other jobs in a depot's 
procurement division if these tasks pro- 
vided experience beneficial to termination 
work, but in any case training took pre- 
cedence over any immediate assignment 
to jobs. 77 Some five hundred QMC officers 
and civilians were trained in termination 
work at the Army Industrial College, the 
Army Finance School at Fort Benjamin 
Harrison, and the Judge Advocate Gen- 
eral's School at Ann Arbor, Mich. 78 The 
courses at these schools emphasized the 

" Ltr, Dir of Procurement Div, OQMG, to CO 
BQMD et aL, 18 Nov 44, sub: Contract Termination 

78 Summary Rpt, p. 2. 



broad regulatory and policy basis of ter- 
mination and its legal and financial as- 
pects. The objective was to provide a qual- 
ified officer or civilian trained in contract 
termination procedures at each Quarter- 
master depot or Quartermaster supply 
section of an ASF depot. 

The OQMG used regional conferences 
as well as Army schools to train its field 
personnel, while the depots organized their 
own courses and schools where the great 
bulk of the personnel was trained. As V-J 
Day approached, the necessity of continu- 
ing such training was emphasized, par- 
ticularly the advisability of informing all 
personnel of depot procurement divisions 
of contract termination policies and pro- 
cedures. 79 Keeping procurement personnel 
abreast of termination developments was 
in line with the OQMG policy of utilizing 
such personnel wherever possible in termi- 
nation work since they had a background 
of relevant experience, and after V-J Day 
many buyers and production experts were 
diverted into termination activities to help 
carry the tremendous burden of mass 

From the beginning the OQMG was 
aware of the need to train Quartermaster 
contractors in termination procedures 
though this presented difficulties. Under 
the centralized purchase policies of the 
Corps, each of the five major procuring 
depots had contracts in many states, there- 
by making it impracticable for each depot 
to train its own contractors. In addition, 
the Corps dealt with many small contrac- 
tors who could not be brought together 
easily for training and in any event were 
not especially concerned with advance 
technical information on termination. 80 

The solution of the problem was ap- 
proached in a number of ways. In co-oper- 
atioi. with representatives of other tech- 

nical services, the depots participated in 
organizing courses for contractors at uni- 
versities in key locations throughout the 
country. Manufacturers, while approving 
this method, thought that small contrac- 
tors could best be reached through meet- 
ings held in key cities throughout a state 
under the auspices of manufacturers' 
associations. This method of training was 
also widely used. 

To further the training program for both 
contractors and Quartermaster personnel, 
the OQMG prepared guides, pamphlets, 
and manuals. It also devised and utilized 
a series of about forty visual aids for this 
purpose, including films and dramatiza- 
tions of contract termination activities. 

Disposal of Termination Inventory 

A depot could not settle a terminated 
contract until termination inventories and 
facilities, both contractor-owned and gov- 
ernment-owned, were cleared from the 
contractor's plant. Such termination in- 
ventory was primarily disposed of by 
retention at cost by the contractor, by 
transferral to government agencies, or by 
sale to commercial buyers. Usually be- 
cause of his operating needs, the contractor 
was given the option of retaining any or all 
of the inventory he wanted, thereby elimi- 
nating it from termination proceedings in 
exchange for a no-cost settlement, which 
relieved the government of any termina- 
tion charges for such inventory. 

79 Ltr, Dir of Procurement Div, OQMG, to CO 
BQMD et al., 27 Jul 45, sub: Contract Termination 
Tng for Procurement Pers. 

80 Memo, TQMG for Dir of Read] Div, ASF, 23 
May 44, sub: Tng for Contract Termination. In May 
1944 the QMC had approximately 10,000 active con- 
tracts with 5,100 prime contractors located in forty- 
eight states. These contracts had been awarded mainly 
by the five Quartermaster procurement depots. 



Government- Furnished Materials 

Possibly the most complicated aspect of 
Quartermaster contract terminations re- 
lated to accountability for government- 
furnished material (GFM) that was used 
in the production of Quartermaster 
items. 81 The increase of terminations dur- 
ing 1943 suggested the desirability of re- 
ducing credit transactions to a minimum 
and of keeping records with contractors in 
order. Furthermore, the shortages of raw 
materials impelled the QMC to make all 
possible savings. Investigation had shown 
that GFM was being released to contrac- 
tors in excess of needs for current produc- 
tion and had raised doubts of the protec- 
tion being afforded the government 
against the misuse of GFM in the hands of 

Out of a survey of this problem by the 
Organization Planning and Control Divi- 
sion, OQMG, there developed in the sum- 
mer of 1944 the GFM plan, containing a 
framework of policies, principles, and 
procedures. 82 At the same time, the depots 
were directed to review contracts involv- 
ing GFM and establish audit sections to 
audit contracts involving GFM. A GFM 
branch was established in the procure- 
ment division at each depot, the officer in 
charge being designated as the account- 
able property officer responsible for main- 
taining the required property accounting 
records. 83 

Government-furnished material ranged 
from raw material, processed material, 
fabricated material, finished parts, and 
assemblies to complete items ready for use. 
The details covering the furnishing, use, 
and final disposition of GFM were written 
into the procurement contract, which 
specified the quantity and methods of de- 
livery of GFM, the use of the material in 

the item under contract, the allowance for 
loss or spoilage, and the means by which 
the contractor would pay for or replace 
any material for which he could not 

Government-furnished material in ter- 
mination inventory included bulk or un- 
processed GFM, work in process, and 
clippings, as in the case of textiles, which 
had only a poundage value. The OQMG 
prepared a current list of essential indus- 
trial materials that it retained in the dis- 
posal of termination inventory. 84 All others 
it sold or disposed of, and even material 
marked for Quartermaster retention could 
be sold to the contractor provided the 
quantity so released would be required by 
him to complete work in process that he 
wanted to retain for his own account. 
Without this provision, many contractors, 
especially those producing clothing and 
equipage items, would have been unable 
to convert promptly to civilian production 
since they had little, if any, materials of 
their own on hand at the time their con- 
tracts were terminated. This procedure 
raised some questions on pricing policy, 
but a ruling of the Surplus War Property 
Administration was interpreted to exempt 
from pricing policies the sale of GFM ac- 
complished in a predetermined settlement. 
The GFM in termination inventories sold 
after termination had taken effect could 

81 See Risen, Th e Quartermast er Corps: Organization, 
Supply, and Services Ch. Villi 

» 2 (1) OQMG OO 25-89, 8 Jul 44, s,ub: Industrial 
Materials and GFM Plan. (2) OQMG Cir 34, 12 Jul 
44, same sub. 

8:1 (1) OQMG Cir 39, 9 Aug 44, sub: Review of 
Contracts Involving GFM. (2) Maj T.J. Hanson to 
TQMG, 4 Sep 44, sub: Establishment of Adequate 
Protection of Government Against Carelessness and 
Misuse of GFM. (3) OQMG Cir 34, Supplement 2, 27 
Oct 44, sub: Industrial Materials and GFM Plan. 

s4 (1) OQMG Cir 34, Supplement 3, 2 Nov 44, sub: 
Industrial Materials anr! GFM Plan. (2) Ibid., Supple- 
ment 16, 12 Oct 45, same sub 



not be exempted from the pricing policies 
established by the Surplus War Property 
Administration. 85 

The QMC did not retain GFM being 
processed in items under manufacture. 
Such materials were disposed of as termi- 
nation inventory in the same manner as 
contractor-owned material contained in 
work in process. In the case of unprocessed 
GFM sold to the contractor, the sale price 
was treated as a disposal credit in reduc- 
tion of the amount of the final settlement 
payment to the contractor. The GFM in- 
ventory not otherwise sold or disposed of 
was cleared from the contractor's plant 
and declared surplus to the RFC regional 
office in the same manner as contractor- 
owned property. 88 

Since GFM, on the whole, represented 
critical materials for which a ready market 
existed, few special problems were en- 
countered in their disposal. 87 Difficulties 
did arise in accounting for GFM as a 
prerequisite to contract termination settle- 
ment. All depots experienced considerable 
trouble in obtaining from the contractors 
satisfactory inventory schedules of GFM 
on hand. Inventories submitted were 
usually inaccurate. In part, inaccuracy re- 
sulted from the fact that, although the 
government demanded that such inven- 
tories specify sizes, types, and quantities of 
GFM, the contractor frequently neglected 
to give complete information. Discrepan- 
cies also developed from the failure of the 
contractor to keep a perpetual inventory, 
for in the rush of production, records were 
neglected. Then, too, although GFM was 
issued for the production of a given item 
on a contract, it did not necessarily follow 
that the contractor observed this rule. He 
could and did apply GFM to any of a 
number of contracts that he had running 
simultaneously. In his plant a contractor 

might, for example, have production going 
on duffel bags, leggings, and shelter-half 
tents at the same time, to which he 
diverted GFM intended for any one of the 
items. Such diversion was common and 
resulted in confusion in recording GFM. 
Whether it was GFM fabrics supplied for 
the production of Army clothing, duck for 
tents, webbing for equipage, or GFM com- 
ponents supplied to the assemblers of 
special rations, discrepancies occurred and 
accounting difficulties hampered the 
settlement of claims. 88 

Possibly no claims were more trouble- 
some to settle than those at the Chicago 
Depot involving special rations. The num- 
ber of contracts involving GFM was fewer 
for special rations than for other supplies 
at the depot, but the problem of account- 
ing was complicated by the fact that as 
many as fifty ration components might be 
supplied to one contractor. 89 These com- 
ponents tended to be more difficult to 
handle than the GFM furnished for cloth- 
ing and equipage items, because, consist- 
ing of foodstuffs, they were subject to 

85 (1) Memo, Gen Corbin, OQMG, for CG ASF, 30 
Sep 44, sub: Sale of GFM to Contractors. (2) 1st Ind, 
Office of Dir of Mat, ASF, to OQMG, 6 Oct 44, on 
above memo. (3) Chief of Contract Termination Br 
to Legal Br, Procurement Div, OQMG, 23 Oct 44, 
sub: Sale of GFM to Contractors. (4) Legal Br to Con- 
tract Termination Br, OQMG, 9 Nov 44, same sub. 

86 OQMG Cir 76, Sec. Ill, par. 15c, 21 Dec 44, sub: 
Contract Termination. 

RT See Risch, Demobilization Planning and Operation in 
the Quartermaster Corps, pp. 61-64. 

S!< (1) Intervs, OQMG historian with John O'Neil, 
GFM Br, and William Lawson, procurement spe- 
cialist, JQMD, 6-7 Feb 47. (2) Interv, OQMG 
historian with Hyman Reinstein, accountable prop- 
erty off, PQMD, 17 Jan 47, 

80 Included in the various menus of the ten-in-one 
ration were 17 meat items, 5 different canned vege- 
tables, 7 types of candy bars, 4 kinds of puddings, 4 
types of beverage powders, and numerous separate 
items, such as canned Army spread, biscuits, evapo- 
rated milk, sugar, salt, cigarettes, chewing gum, toilet 
soap and paper, and water purification tablets. 



spoilage and pilferage. Packaging mate- 
rials, such as cellophane and aluminum 
foil, which were in very critical supply 
during most of the war, were also provided 
by the Chicago Depot for component 
manufacturers who could not obtain them. 
Packing materials were likewise secured 
when necessary. Because there was almost 
always a shortage of these materials and 
components and because special rations 
menus were undergoing almost constant 
change in an effort to provide the most 
palatable substitutes for real meals that 
could be found, both the contractor and 
the depot tended more or less to relegate 
record keeping to the background. At the 
same time it undoubtedly seemed unim- 
portant to the contractor assembling 
ration components to account for ciga- 
rettes, gum, and candy bars, which disap- 
peared because of the temptation to 
employees when these items were scarce, 
or to the jam manufacturer to show claim 
for loss that occurred in the partial thaw- 
ing of frozen fruits transferred from stor- 
age. Reconciling the resultant discrepan- 
cies later proved exceedingly troublesome. 
Ultimately, to expedite contract termina- 
tion settlement, the Chicago Depot worked 
out a procedure for closing 1945 GFM 
accounts according to a plan agreed to by 
the OQMG, providing for reconciliation 
of the discrepancies between contractor 
inventories and government charges of 
GFM. 90 

Government-Furnished Equipment 
and Facilities 

Contractors were also furnished govern- 
ment-owned equipment and facilities — 
the term GFE was loosely used to cover 
both — in order to expedite the production 
of war goods. 81 Such equipment was con- 

sidered as potential termination inventory. 
To allow the contractor to make claims for 
special facilities as termination charges, 
however, it had to be shown that the facil- 
ity was acquired by him solely for the 
performance of the government contract 
that was terminated, or for that contract 
and other war production contracts. In 
addition, it had to be determined that the 
contractor had been required to install 
such facilities in order to perform the con- 
tract. No facility could be considered spe- 
cial nor would reimbursement be made if 
only minor changes in physical condition 
or location were necessary to make the 
facility useful in the peacetime business of 
the contractor. The claims in termination 
settlement were made only for the un- 
amortized portion of the cost of the facil- 
ities applicable to the terminated contract. 
Contracts might, with the approval of The 
Quartermaster General, include a provi- 
sion granting an option to the contractor 
to buy the equipment after the completion 
of the contract if this action was to the in- 
terest of the government. All the equip- 
ment specified in the contract had to be 
purchased as a unit except when items 
were withdrawn by contracting officers 
because they were needed for other war 

Government-furnished equipment was 
acquired by the contractor under a War 
Department facilities contract. This was a 
lease or rental agreement governing the 
use, retention, storage, maintenance, or 
disposition of GFE provided for or 
acquired by the war contractor for use in 
war production. It was the policy of the 
War Department to clear idle plant equip- 

90 Massen, Central Procurement Operations, pp. 

91 Risch, Th e Quartermaster Corps: Organization, Sup- 
ply, and Services J"C"Ch. VIII. | 



ment from war contractors' plants as 
quickly as possible and to have the govern- 
ment bear the cost of dismantling plant 
equipment, preparing and preserving it 
for storage, and preparing it for shipment 
and removal from the plant, except insofar 
as the facilities contract required the con- 
tractor to bear such expense. On the other 
hand, the government, except in a few in- 
stances, did not bear any part of the cost 
of reconverting the contractor's plant to 
commercial production. 92 

Subsistence contracts accounted for the 
largest part of the GFE used in the Corps. 
For example, canners and some independ- 
ent procoaters were encouraged to build 
and install procoating equipment under 
GFE arrangements. Procoating was used 
to inhibit rust on Army canned goods 
under long and exposed storage overseas 
and to camouflage cans in open storage 
dumps or in discard. After V-J Day all pro- 
coating operations were ordered stopped 
as soon as supplies of paint and thinner 
had been used up. The Army then re- 
turned to the use of plain cans in all export 
pack. Disposing of procoating equipment 
posed quite a problem since there was 
little or no commercial demand for pro- 
coating cans. After disposal agents had 
exhausted the possibility of adapting the 
equipment to other uses, the Chicago 
Depot submitted a typical case to the 
Chicago Regional Office of the RFC to 
determine the "unserviceability" of the 
machine so that all procoating equipment 
could, if necessary, be disposed of as scrap 
or salvage. The Chicago Regional Office 
decided that the procoating machinery 
was "one- purpose" and so could be de- 
clared unserviceable. The depot there- 
upon directed that parts of the machinery, 
such as electric motors, gears, fans, and the 
like, might be salvaged and the remainder 

sold for junk. The average offer for the 
salvaged parts was $150 a machine, and in 
most cases, the contractor was the buyer. 
At both the Jersey City and the Chicago 
Quartermaster Depots about ten cents on 
the dollar was realized in the disposal of 
equipment that ranged in value from 
$1,500 to $1 0,000. 9a 

The settlement of special facilities claims 
became one of the outstanding problems 
in terminating contracts for dehydrated 
products. In part this problem arose be- 
cause there, had been numerous verbal 
authorizations by the procurement spe- 
cialists to permit special facilities for 
dehydrated vegetables in connection with 
the awarding of 1945-46 contracts. There 
had been considerable experimentation on 
dehydrated vegetables during the 1944 
production season with the result that 
depot field supervisors instructed dehy- 
drators that new kinds of equipment to 
improve the final product would be neces- 
sary. Thus, drying bins were recommend- 
ed to make possible lower moisture content 
and so improve the storage life of a 
product; the use of chlorinators was en- 
couraged as a sanitary measure; and pre- 
conditioning equipment for treating raw 
material to improve color in storage was 
required for sweet potatoes and its use en- 
couraged for white potatoes. 

These special facilities had been in- 
stalled by dehydrators in some cases to- 
ward the end of the 1944-45 season and in 
others after this producing season had 
ended. To keep the special facility claims 
within the bounds of the termination regu- 
lation, the depot determined to reimburse 

92 (l)JTR— Revision 1, par. 861.1, 20 Apr 45. (2) 
PR 10, par. 1003. (3) For the few exceptions to the 
general rule, see PR 10, par. 1003- A. 

93 (1) Massen, Central Procurement Operations, p. 
197. (2) Interv, OQMG historian with Roger Merrill, 
property disposal agent, JCQMD at NYPO, 2 Jan 47. 



the dehydrators whose contracts were ter- 
minated for only those facility expendi- 
tures made for the 1945-46 producing 
season. Expenditures made before 1 July 
1945 were generally to be considered as 
operating costs of the contracts for the pre- 
vious year's operations. The special equip- 
ment on which the depot paid claims was 
varied, including a steam boiler purchased 
for the dehydration of rutabagas, drying 
bins, sulfiting equipment, and cyntron 
feeding screeners. 94 

The fact that most of the dehydrating 
plants had operated only three years, 
whereas the certificate of necessity under 
which they were built was for five years, 
led some of the contractors to seek allow- 
ance in termination settlements for amor- 
tization that normally would have 
occurred over the remaining two years. 95 
Although contractors felt they should be 
reimbursed for the expenditures made, 
these claims could be paid only if, accord- 
ing to the Contract Settlement Act of 1944, 
contractors supplied the name of the Army 
agent with whom they dealt to support the 
validity of their claims. Such information 
could not always be furnished, and conse- 
quently in the long run only two or three 
such claims were filed on dehydrated veg- 
etable contracts. One, for example, cov- 
ered the erection of a plant to produce 
dehydrated potatoes for the duration of 
the war only. The dehydration plant, 
financed by a company already in exist- 
ence, was built in July 1942 and fulfilled 
its first contract in the following month. 
When the contract for the previous year 
had been completed in May 1945, the 
company, in order to prepare the plant for 
operation in the 1946 producing season, 
made extensive repairs upon the advice of 
the OQMG. At the end of August 1945, 
when a contract for 1 ,500,000 pounds of 

dehydrated potatoes for the 1945 season 
was canceled, the firm claimed that over 
the entire period of operations an operat- 
ing loss had been assumed in excess of 
$63,700 and that the unamortized special 
facility was worth $7 1,882. A claim for a 
total of $87,003 related to emergency facil- 
ities was filed under the Contract Settle- 
ment Act, and the net settlement paid to 
the contractor totaled $40,1 14. 96 

Wherever the depots disposed of GFE, 
it was sold under the Clayton formula, 
which provided a method of selling GFE 
based on depreciation of a certain per- 
centage for each month's usage. Facilities 
sold under this formula brought from 50 to 
75 percent of cost. Equipment not sold to 
war contractors was declared surplus by 
the War Department and turned over to 
the War Assets Administration (WAA). 
The Clayton formula furnished a guide for 
the disposal of equipment, but disposing 
of special facilities provided to leaseholds, 
such as installing an elevator in a build- 
ing, or adding a new floor or new windows, 
proved troublesome when it came to the 
settlement of claims. Few contracts made 
provisions for the disposition of such facil- 
ities, and it was difficult to secure the 
residual value of them. The most involved 
cases for settlement were those wherein ex- 
pansion had been forced on the contractor 

Massen, Central Procurement Operations, pp. 
176, 178. 

s,s The vegetable dehydration industry was so lim- 
ited in size before the war that it did not begin to 
meet expanded wartime demands. At the beginning 
of World War II, therefore, numerous dehydrating 
firms sprang up, financing building by loans granted 
either by the government or by private banks under 
"certificates of necessity," which entitled them to 
amortization over a five-year period, or a shorter 
period if the emergency ended sooner. Massen, Cen- 
tral Procurement Operations, p. 179. 

H,i Ibid., pp. 180-81. For other cases of subsistence 
claims see Risch, Demobilization Planning and Operation 
in the Quartermaster Corps, pp. 67-68. 



since they involved starting load costs. Be- 
cause of the huge procurement orders 
many plants were compelled to expand. 
They were also required to produce items, 
such as the intrenching shovel, that were 
foreign to the commercial market. The 
critical supply of certain materials forced 
the use of substitutes, which, in turn, com- 
pelled the contractor to work with an un- 
known quantity and raised anew the 
question of starting load costs. When ter- 
minations occurred, the depots had to take 
cognizance of new equipment and new as- 
sembly lines established as well as addi- 
tional plant space acquired. Making 
allowance for such new equipment and 
facilities always involved controversial ele- 
ments, but the greatest problem was 
ferreting out starting load costs. 97 

Contractor- Owned Termination 

The disposal of contractor-owned ter- 
mination inventory, in most cases, posed 
no special problems. In some instances 
where the depot had to dispose of surplus 
standard items, such as Gillette razor 
blades or Squibb toothpaste, when con- 
tracts were terminated, it had to take pre- 
cautions against glutting the market. 
Otherwise one of the policies underlying 
the JTR would have been defeated. 

On the other hand, the disposition of 
termination inventory in subsistence con- 
tracts was not without its difficulties. The 
most unusual and unexpected problems 
occurred in disposing of raw materials 
when contracts for dehydrated vegetables 
were terminated. A large part of these dif- 
ficulties were attributable to the inade- 
quacy of the JTR in making provision for 
the disposition of perishable items. The 
time of year when terminations occurred 

also had a drastic effect upon settlement. 
In August and September little processing 
had occurred under the rather large con- 
tracts for the fiscal year 1946, and most of 
the fresh vegetables being grown for dehy- 
dration were still in the ground. The dis- 
position of this inventory — vegetables in 
various stages of growth and harvested 
vegetables — constituted one of the chief 
problems in the termination settlement of 
contracts for dehydrated vegetables. 

In the main, disposal of the fresh veg- 
etables was arranged by consultation 
among representatives of the Field Head- 
quarters of the Market Center Procure- 
ment Program, the OQMG, and the De- 
partment of Agriculture. Eventually a 
procedure for disposal was established 
which provided that, if no market at full 
cost could be found for the matured crops 
in commercial channels, the depot would 
inform the Market Center Headquarters 
of their availability. If the latter did not 
desire the items for Army menus, then the 
crops would be declared surplus to the 
Department of Agriculture. 98 The decision 
as to whether crops in the growing stages 
should be permitted to mature or should 
be abandoned was made by the depot and 
confirmed by the OQMG. 

Sweet and white potatoes, carrots, cab- 
bages, rutabagas, beets, and onions were 
the principal raw materials for which dis- 
posal had to be arranged when dehydrated 
vegetable contracts were terminated. The 
difficulties encountered can best be dis- 
cussed by illustration. For example, almost 
all of the carrots and cabbages for Army 
dehydrated vegetables were grown on the 

B7 Intervs, OQMG historian with Adam Michals, 
procurement specialist in hardware; with Collings 
Downes, Legal Sec; and with William Lawson, pro- 
curement specialist, JQMD, 6 Feb 47. 

B * Massen, Central Procurement Operations, pp. 



Pacific coast, the carrots being produced 
entirely in California. These crops were in 
various stages of growth at the time of con- 
tract termination. When stop-work notices 
were sent out to the dehydrators, the farn> 
ers had to cease cultivating, irrigating, and 
tending their crops. The problem of dis- 
posal therefore demanded immediate at- 
tention. The varieties of cabbage being 
grown, however, were not suited to com- 
mercial channels outside dehydration nor 
was commercial disposition possible for 
the variety of carrots grown. On the other 
hand, the Market Center Program could 
accept only a few carloads of carrots and 
none of cabbage, since spoilage in trans- 
portation of the latter commodity was very 
high. The Subsistence Division, OQMG, 
instructed the Chicago Depot to dispose of 
matured cabbage and carrots, for either 
animal or human consumption, at the best 
price obtainable. To keep the claims at a 
minimum, the growing crops were ordered 
abandoned in the field. It was also decided 
to pay the grower for the cost of produc- 
tion to whatever stage the crop had 
matured and for the cost of destroying the 
crop. Because fields had to be cleared be- 
fore other crops could be planted, the 
question of posttermination expense arose. 
The cost of discing the fields where crops 
were abandoned was deemed a legitimate 
expense and was paid by the government. 

A small acreage of the carrot crop was 
purchased by other dehydrators but the 
remainder was retained by the contractors 
at a loss to the government. One of the 
largest contractors, whose termination of 
fresh carrots amounted to 6,912 tons, dis- 
posed of 1,500 tons at no cost to the gov- 
ernment. He offered $5.00 a ton on the 
remainder, of which he expected to freeze 
a part and to sell the rest as cattle feed. 
Another grower with 123 acres of unhar- 

vested carrots valued at $21,719 made a 
retention offer of only $1.00 an acre. Ap- 
proved by the depot, this offer was 
accepted under protest by the Depot 
Property Disposal Board when it was 
shown that it would cost the Army $25.00 
a ton to harvest the carrots and that only 
those desirable for commercial purposes 
could be sold. It was cheaper to settle this 
claim on a cost basis than on an abandon- 
ment basis, for in the latter case the gov- 
ernment would also have had to pay 
destruction expense as well as the value of 
the potential harvest." 

The cost of disposing of the cabbage 
crop on the west coast was not so high as 
that for carrots, although abandonment 
had been authorized for all crops that had 
not reached maturity at the time of con- 
tract termination. The cabbage ready for 
market was in some cases sold to other de- 
hydrators at contract price. With the ap- 
proval of the Depot Property Disposal 
Board, four contractors abandoned about 
1,000 acres of unmatured cabbage. The 
settlements with the grower subcontractors 
included cultivating claims, which in some 
cases amounted to $95.00 an acre. Even 
when the profit to growers was counted in, 
the cost of abandonment, though sizable, 
would probably be less than the amount 
of the loss risk with sale upon harvest, since 
the harvest in some cases was months 
away. On the other hand, the Depot Prop- 
erty Disposal Board accepted a retention 
offer for twenty contracts for cabbage 
growing made by one of the large dehy- 
drators. Up to termination the cost of 
raising the crops totaled $63,000 and the 
total contract price of the completed crops 
was $145,000. The dehydrator was willing 
to handle the completed crop for two- 

" 9 Ibid., p. 134. 



thirds value, making a retention offer of 
$15,000 on the $63,000, which left a net 
cost to the government of $48,000. Had 
the offer not been accepted, the cost to the 
government on the basis of abandonment 
would have been $63,000 plus the profit 
allowed the contractor and abandonment 
costs; hence the government gained by 
this settlement. 100 

Disposal of Surplus Property 

Military property and salvage as well as 
contractor termination inventory required 
disposal. The disposition of excess and sur- 
plus military property involved the redis- 
tribution of excess property, that is, sup- 
plies in excess of local needs in a specified 
area and hence available for transfer; the 
determination of excess property as sur- 
plus to the needs of the War Department; 
and the disposal of surplus property. 
Aware of the difficulties that had devel- 
oped in surplus disposal after World War 
I, the War Department had given early 
consideration to this problem. 101 

Disposal Problems 

By the fall of 1944 the War Department 
had made sufficient strides in estimating 
requirements and defining redistribution 
and disposal levels to eliminate some of 
the difficulties that the OQMG had been 
encountering in the disposal of surplus 
property, but others quickly arose from the 
relationships with disposal agencies out- 
side the War Department. Between 1944 
and 1946 these agencies succeeded each 
other with great rapidity. 

Originally, the Surplus War Property 
Administration was established in the 
OWM by Executive order in February 
1944. It issued a regulation, effective 15 

May, for the War and Navy Departments 
and the United States Maritime Commis- 
sion, designating the Procurement Divi- 
sion, Treasury Department, as the dis- 
posal agency for consumer goods; the 
RFC, for producer and capital goods; the 
War Food Administration (WFA), for 
food; and the Foreign Economic Adminis- 
tration (FEA) as the agency for handling 
the disposition of surpluses outside the 
United States. 

Public interest in the disposal of surplus 
property culminated in the enactment of 
the Surplus Property Act of 1944, which 
established a Surplus Property Board to 
replace the Surplus War Property Admin- 
istration on 3 October 1944. 102 This board 
in turn gave way to a Surplus Property 
Administration, which was established in 
the Office of War Mobilization and Recon- 
version (OWMR) under an adminis- 
trator. 103 

Meanwhile, the responsibility for dis- 
posing of consumer goods, assigned to the 
Office of Surplus Property in the Treasury 
Department on 19 February 1944, was 
transferred to the Department of Com- 
merce, effective 1 May 1945. About six 
months later this office was again trans- 
ferred, along with its activities and person- 
nel, to the RFC, where it continued as the 
War Assets Corporation. 104 

Approximately two months later, effec- 
tive as of the close of business 15 January 
1946, the War Assets Corporation was 
designated by the Surplus Property Ad- 

100 Ibid., pp. 135-36. 

10 * Risch, Th e Quarterma ster Corps: Organization, Sup- 
ply, and Services [l, Gh. XJ For a discussion and defini- 
tion of red istribution and disposal levels, also see 

nyi U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 58, pp. 765-84. 

103 (1) Ibid., Vol. 59. p. 533. (2) Federal Register, IX, 

104 Federal Register, X, 4253, 13039. 



ministrator as the disposal agency for all 
types of property for which the RFC was 
formerly the disposal agency. The follow- 
ing month by Executive order the domes- 
tic functions of the Surplus Property Ad- 
ministration were merged with those of the 
War Assets Corporation, and its foreign 
functions were transferred to the Depart- 
ment of State. By the same order, but ef- 
fective 25 March 1946, the War Assets Ad- 
ministration was established to administer 
the domestic surplus disposal functions of 
the War Assets Corporation and the former 
Surplus Property Administration. 105 These 
kaleidoscopic changes in the administra- 
tion of surplus property disposal necessi- 
tated frequent reorientation in Quarter- 
master relationships with the disposal 
agencies and accounted in part for the dif- 
ficulties the Corps met in disposing of its 

In addition, earlier difficulties relating 
to nomenclature and description persisted, 
for the type of information sought by dis- 
posal agencies was quite different from that 
normally maintained in Army records. 
When the Department of Commerce as- 
sumed responsibility for the disposal of 
consumer goods, part of the original basis 
of understanding was that "the Army 
would in effect guarantee the quantity, 
quality, and description of articles to be 
declared surplus in response to our request 
that priority in this respect be given to 
articles in short supply or in danger of 
early price deterioration in view of rapid 
reconversion." 106 The Director of the 
Office of Surplus Property felt there was 
no lack of co-operative spirit but that the 
problems were attributable to the physical 
and administrative difficulties that the 
Army was encountering in its lower eche- 
lons and in its inventory and records 

The troubles experienced by the dis- 
posal agencies grew out of the differences 
between commercial and Army proce- 
dures resulting from utilization of a system 
of issue in the Army as compared with 
sales in commercial channels. 107 In the 
case of issued items it was unnecessary to 
distinguish in great detail between items 
carrying substantially similar specifica- 
tions. Clothing, for example, manufac- 
tured from GFM by different companies 
and at different costs was nonetheless car- 
ried under a single stock number. Simi- 
larly, a certain type and weight of type- 
writer paper was carried under a given 
stock number and used to fill requisitions 
under a standard nomenclature, although 
stocks might be made up of the products 
of several different manufacturers, and 
some of the paper might be of a quality 
varying from the specification standard. 
Speed, efficiency of operation, and econ- 
omy were the factors that had determined 
the Army's adoption of this practice. 
Although recognition of this practice was 
fundamental in building disposal pro- 
grams, it was largely ignored by the suc- 
cessive disposal agencies in the months 
immediately following the end of the war. 
Much of the difficulty experienced by the 
early disposal agency could be attributed 
to its failure to distinguish between an "is- 
sue" status and a "sales" status. 108 The 
OQMG was willing to provide commercial 
breakdowns where feasible, but in many 

105 Ibid., XI, 406, 1265, 3301. 

10C Ltr, Dir of Office of Surplus Prop, Commerce 
Dept, to Surplus Prop Administrator, 15 Oct 45, no 

107 Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for CG ASF, 26 
Oct 45, sub: Commerce Rpt on Problems En- 
countered in Disposing of Surplus Mil Prop. 

108 See Ltr, Dir of Office of Surplus Prop, Com- 
merce Dept, to Administrator, SPA, 15 Oct 45, no sub, 
and Incl, sub: Nation-wide Sales Program Difficulties 
Chargeable to Reliance on Army Info and Sv. 



instances obtaining such information in- 
volved prohibitive costs. The speed with 
which essential declarations were proc- 
essed beginning on 15 August 1945 also 
contributed to inaccuracies, as did the 
constant and increasingly heavy turnover 
in depot personnel, which led to the use of 
many inexperienced employees. 

The lack of co-ordination between the 
OQMG and the disposal agencies that 
had existed during the formative stages of 
the disposal program contributed to the 
difficulties experienced in the disposal of 
surplus property. Because liaison had not 
been established, the OQMG failed to ad- 
vise the disposal agencies concerning the 
type of information available so that sales 
programs could be built accordingly and 
methods developed to dispose of products 
in the most economical manner permitted 
under the Surplus Property Act. This situ- 
ation was remedied in September 1945 by 
the appointment of liaison officers by each 
technical service. 109 

Withdrawals from Quartermaster prop- 
erty that had already been declared sur- 
plus also caused persistent difficulties and 
became one of the biggest problems con- 
fronting the OQMG. If the depots had as- 
sumed originally that they were free to 
take whatever action they wanted in re- 
gard to property declared surplus until it 
was taken over by the disposal agencies, 
these agencies, on the other hand, tended 
in the beginning to oppose any with- 
drawals. The OQMG agreed that with- 
drawals of declarations were undesirable 
and were to be avoided as much as possi- 
ble. The over-all objective of the disposal 
program was to serve the public interest 
by diverting to civilian channels items not 
required by the Army. The disposing 
agency had to recognize, however, that er- 
rors in declarations were possible or that 

changes in requirements might occur 
necessitating withdrawals that should re- 
ceive priority over any disposal program. 
The OQMG urged that under no circum- 
stances should the Army be put in the po- 
sition of entering the open market to pro- 
cure items in order to "make good" on a 
surplus declaration, which, as a result of 
subsequent study or changed conditions 
was revealed to be no longer surplus. 110 

It became established Quartermaster 
policy that the Stock Control Branch of 
the OQMG controlled all requests for 
withdrawals of surplus Quartermaster 
property at the depot level. 111 Such with- 
drawals could be effected only as specifi- 
cally directed by the OQMG and with the 
concurrence of the disposal agency. The 
withdrawals were directed only after 
studies had been made within the OQMG 
and it had been definitely determined that 
such items were needed to meet immediate 
and future War Department requirements. 
In the spring of 1946 an excessive number 
of withdrawals from surplus property of 
small quantities of items, however, neces- 
sitated reiteration of War Department 
policy — that withdrawals should be initi- 
ated or approved only if it could be shown 
that a withdrawal would prevent procure- 
ment. 112 

As the months passed requests for with- 
drawal of many surplus items nevertheless 
became quite numerous, a situation read- 

108 Memo, Dir of Readj Div, ASF, for TQMG, 8 
Sep 45, sub: Appointment of Liaison Offs. 

,i0 Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for CG ASF, 26 
Oct 45, sub: Commerce Rpt on Problems Encountered 
in Disposing of Surplus Mil Prop. 

1,1 (1) Ltr, Col Cound, OQMG, to CG ASF, 6 May 
46, sub: Withdrawals of Surplus Prop. (2) Ltr, Cound 
to CGs or COs of All QM Depots et at, 3 May 46, 
same sub. 

112 Ltr, TAG to Chiefs of Tech Svs, 26 Apr 46, sub: 
Withdrawals from Declared Surpluses, SPXAM-PM 
400.703 (25 Apr 46) AC-C-SPDDI. 



ily understandable when viewed against 
the background of conditions immediately 
after V-J Day. Then every effort was be- 
ing exerted to make available items that 
were needed in civilian markets, and to 
this end drastic reductions were made in 
Army disposal levels. On many items 
levels were established as of 31 December 
1947 and in some cases, 30 June 1947. The 
presumption was that such items would be 
disposed of immediately. In such cases, 
where the Army had only enough stocks to 
meet its needs until these dates and conse- 
quently would have to initiate procure- 
ment action making allowance for the nec- 
essary lead time, the OQMG felt that sur- 
plus items should be returned to obviate 
the expenditure of funds if the items had 
not been committed by the disposal agen- 
cy. Where entire quantities of items had 
not been sold, the OQMG thought the un- 
disposed portion should also be released 
for withdrawal. There was no question of 
recapturing items that had been committed 
or advertised for sale. In view of the dras- 
tic cuts in appropriations and the fact that 
commercial firms were indifferent to and 
unable to produce for military needs, it 
was deemed essential that every item 
needed by the Army be recaptured re- 
gardless of the circumstances under which 
it was declared surplus. 113 

In addition, the War Department was 
called upon to assist in foreign aid pro- 
grams. As a consequence, surplus property 
of many classifications and involving large 
operations was withdrawn for use in the 
Surplus Incentive Materials and other 
foreign aid projects. Such withdrawals not 
only helped in the rehabilitation efforts in 
occupied areas but also enabled the dis- 
posal agency to rid itself of property for 
which disposal outlets were limited. 

If repeated withdrawal was a sore point 

with disposal agencies, the OQMG com- 
plained of the delays experienced in ob- 
taining approval by regional offices of the 
WAA of requests for withdrawals submit- 
ted by Quartermaster field installations. 114 
The OQMG felt that such approval or 
disapproval should be furnished within 
ten days, a time limit that was subse- 
quently established by regulation of the 
WAA. In the main, these delays did not 
arise from existing withdrawal policies or 
procedures but from the failure of regional 
offices to implement them in accordance 
with existing regulations and supplemen- 
tary instructions issued by the WAA. Early 
in 1947 the OQMG called the attention of 
the WAA to certain specific problems. It 
noted that freeze orders of the WAA were 
not always honored in the field; that re- 
quests for withdrawals were frequently 
disapproved by regional offices on arbi- 
trary grounds; that disapprovals of with- 
drawals were not rescinded on property 
that remained unsold after it had been ad- 
vertised and unsuccessfully offered to the 
public; and that requests for withdrawals 
were not always acted upon within the pe- 
riod specified by regulations. The OQMG 
therefore requested that steps be taken to 
clarify policies on withdrawals in order to 
eliminate arbitrary bases for the disap- 
proval of withdrawal requests and that cer- 
tain daily bulletins of the WAA be re- 
emphasized to prevent future delays. 118 
The problem of withdrawals continued to 
be studied by the OQMG, and with- 

1,3 Address, Lt Col W. C. Strum to Liaison Offs, 
WDGS, 13 Jan 47, sub: Problems and Plans of QM 
Surplus Disposal, p. 6. 

114 (1) Ltr, Col Strum, OQMG, to Office of Surplus 
Prop, WAA, 8 Aug 46, no sub. (2) Ltr, Col Cound, 
OQMG, to Office of Surplus Prop, 24 Sep 46, no sub. 
(3) Ltr, Cound to same, 6 Nov 46, no sub. 

115 Ltr, Col Cound, OQMG, to Office of Surplus 
Prop, WAA, 20 Jan 47, no sub. 



drawals were effected only as necessary. 

At the end of the war the OQMG be- 
came concerned with releasing commercial 
warehouses and leased storage facilities. 
During the war, because of inadequate 
space at government installations, it was 
necessary to store items in leased facilities 
under contract arrangements. The agree- 
ments made with the owners of these stor- 
age facilities provided for an in-and-out 
handling charge on a lot basis. Most of 
these agreements had terminated about 30 
June 1946, and thereafter the OQMG 
stored and handled surplus property in 
such facilities on the basis of a monthly 
verbal agreement. 

In the course of disposing of surplus 
property stored in these commercial facil- 
ities difficulties developed. In all cases the 
lessors were not only eager to regain their 
storage space and to be relieved of the re- 
sponsibility of storing and handling sur- 
plus property, but they were also reluctant 
to perform any duties other than those 
agreed to at the time of storage. The 
regional offices of the WAA, however, at- 
tempted to handle surplus property stored 
at these leased facilities in the same man- 
ner as that stored at government installa- 
tions. The WAA, for example, sent pros- 
pective purchasers to the commercial 
warehouses to inspect surplus property, 
but provision for inspection was not a serv- 
ice agreed to previously by the lessors. 
Inspection required the lessor to detail 
personnel not only to act as guides but also 
to segregate, open, display, reseal, and re- 
turn the surplus property to storage. No 
existing contracts covered such activities. 

The WAA also requested shipment of 
insignificant quantities of surplus property 
to regional offices for use as samples. In 
one case a single yard of cloth was re- 
quested, which necessitated unpacking a 

bolt, cutting off the required yardage, and 
then repacking and remarking the bolt. 116 
This action, too, involved labor costs to the 
warehouse not covered by existing con- 
tracts. Although the original agreements 
had provided for in-and-out handling on 
a lot basis, most firms agreed to waive this 
provision to ship by lot, the latter usually 
meaning a carload. They refused, how- 
ever, to ship less than an original con- 
tainer. In addition, some regional offices 
of the WAA furnished disposal documents 
direct to the lessors, but the latter refused 
to ship except on receipt of a War Depart- 
ment shipping document inasmuch as pay- 
ment for their services was made only on 
the basis of that shipping document. This 
situation resulted in confusion and delay 
in shipment. The OQMG, therefore, 
urged the WAA to co-operate with the ac- 
countable depot regarding surplus prop- 
erty stored in commercial warehouses. 117 

Release of Civilian-Type Items 

In addition to giving preference to the 
disposition of surplus property stored in 
commercial and leased storage facilities, 
the OQMG also gave top priority to the 
disposal of surplus civilian-type items. 
Until V-J Day emphasis was placed pri- 
marily on the transfer of excess stocks and 
on the disposal of obsolete and nonstand- 
ard items, with only limited disposal of 
standard Quartermaster items. With the 
end of the war, however, attention was 
concentrated on studies of those items that 
would be most needed by the civilian 
economy during the reconversion period. 

116 Ltr, Col Cound, OQMG, to Office of Surplus 
Prop, WAA, 24 Oct 46, no sub. 

117 (1) Ibid. (2) Address, Col Strum, OQMG, to 
Liaison Offs, WDGS, 13 Jan 47, sub: Problems and 
Plans of QM Surplus Disposal. 



In anticipation of V-J Day Headquarters, 
ASF, made its plans, assuming that issue 
demand for Periods II and III would be 
one third that for Period I. The disposal 
level for civilian-type items was to be re- 
duced to one third of that established for 
such items in Supply Control MPR-20, 30 
June 1945. Quantities of stock on hand in 
excess of the reduced redistribution and 
disposal levels were to be declared surplus 
immediately without approval of Head- 
quarters, ASF. Furthermore, circulariza- 
tion to other components of the War 
Department and to the Navy was to be 
discontinued immediately in order to 
make such items available as quickly as 
possible for the civilian market. 118 

The OQMG did not acquiesce in the 
disposal level established, inasmuch as 
Army demands for some items, as, for 
example, clothing, would not be reduced 
by two thirds as of V-J Day. In any event, 
Quartermaster clothing items were appli- 
cable to civilian requirements only as 
substitutes for normal civilian-type items 
when these were unobtainable or obtain- 
able only at inflated prices. They did not 
represent generally satisfactory civilian- 
type supplies. The OQMG requested 
exceptions to the disposal level for various 
items, such as nurses' clothing, laundry 
items, and barracks equipment, because 
the requirements for them would not be 
reduced by two thirds if authorized for the 
use of occupational troops. 119 The release 
of surplus items that would have imme- 
diate acceptance in the civilian economy, 
however, continued to be of primary im- 
portance in the program of surplus disposal 
in the months immediately following the 
end of the war. 120 

The QMC was particularly vulnerable 
to criticism for delays in disposal because 
such a large proportion of its surplus prop- 

erty was consumer goods. Prompt dispos- 
als could fill civilian shortages, whereas 
delays would throw supplies on the market 
in competition with normal civilian pro- 
duction. At the end of the war, therefore, 
the OQMG attacked this problem ener- 
getically. In the first week after Japan's 
surrender the OQMG cleared for disposal 
146 items, having a total value of $94,- 
000,000. 121 After an initial spurt of $83,- 
000,000 in the first three days, the rate of 
clearance averaged only $2,000,000 per 
day, partly because a policy was adopted 
of holding some actions in suspense until 
firm requirements could be fixed for Period 
II, an objective that was accomplished by 
25 August. Subsequently the use of special 
procedures establishing priorities by the 
disposal agencies for the declaration of 
unauthorized items became the major fac- 
tor retarding declarations. As the backlog 
of goods determined to be surplus but not 
yet declared to the disposal agencies 
mounted, these special procedures were 
abandoned, and the OQMG returned to 
its practice of declaring unauthorized 
items for disposal without awaiting the re- 
quest of disposal agencies. By the end of 
1945 the OQMG had declared surplus 
goods to the disposal agencies to the value 
of$281,000,000. 122 

To speed the disposal of surplus prop- 

118 Memo, Dir of Reqmts and Stock Control Div, 
ASF, for TQMG et al., 14 Aug 45, sub: Redistr and 
Disposal Levels and Disposal Action for Civilian-Type 
Items on V-J Day. 

119 (1) Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 15 Aug 45, sub: 
Civilian-Type Items for Immediate Declaration as 
Surplus. (2) Approval was granted in Memo, Dir of 
Reqmts and Stock Control Div, ASF, for TQMG, 18 
Aug 45, same sub. 

120 Memo, Asst Dir of Plans and Opns for Reqmts 
and Surplus Prop, for TQMG et at., 10 Sep 45, sub: 
Disp of Surplus Civilian-Type ASF Mil Prop in the 
Continental U.S. 

121 SR99, 23 Aug 45. 

122 SR 205, 17 Jan 46. 



erty, after V-J Day the QMC divided its 
property into three major categories, 
namely, unauthorized items, authorized 
items, and items received at classification 
depots from posts, camps, and stations and 
from overseas theaters. 123 Unauthorized 
items consisted of obsolete articles and 
those items which were no longer author- 
ized for issue or considered as reasonable 
substitutes for authorized items. Policies 
established at an earlier date were con- 
tinued. Thus through an electric account- 
ing machine (EAM) listing the OQMG 
designated items within this category, con- 
trolling periodical changes in the listing 
and sending it to the depots. The depots 
were instructed to report all stocks of items 
on the unauthorized list as surplus to the 
disposal agency without reference to 
higher authority. Regional depots fur- 
nished the information concerning items 
on the unauthorized list to posts, camps, 
and stations in their distribution areas. 
This served as authority for the stations to 
dispose of such items as surplus without 
reference to higher authority as soon as the 
items became excess to their needs. 

Authorized Quartermaster items at the 
depot level were reported as surplus only 
upon specific instructions from the 
OQMG. Such instructions resulted from 
continuous studies of requirements and 
stock positions. Upon completion of the 
studies, accountable depots were notified 
of the quantities and the condition of the 
stock to be retained for the future needs of 
the War Department as well as of the pro- 
portion to be reported as surplus. In the 
declaration of surplus, preference was al- 
ways given to the disposition of used prop- 
erty, while new property, as far as possible, 
was retained for future Army use. In ad- 
dition, although the choice of the location 
of surpluses to be disposed of was usually 

left to the discretion of the accountable 
depot, preference was given to property 
(1) in commercial storage, (2) in leased 
facilities, (3) in storage at posts, camps, 
and stations on depot accountability, (4) 
in depots other than those assigned a dis- 
tribution area, and (5) in depots assigned 
a distribution area. 

Posts, camps, and stations were also fur- 
nished through regional depots with a list 
of authorized items that, if excess to the 
station level, were required to be returned 
to designated depots to meet War Depart- 
ment requirements. Authorized items that 
were not listed in this publication, how- 
ever, could be disposed of as surplus by the 
stations if excess to the stations' needs. Like 
the unauthorized list, this list was revised 
to meet changes in requirements. The 
basic plans of the OQMG therefore re- 
mained unchanged. Items not needed for 
future War Department requirements 
were disposed of as surplus at the place of 
storage, and only those needed to meet 
future anticipated requirements were re- 
turned to depots. 

Posts, camps, and stations returned 
their excess items included in the author- 
ized list to classification depots. There the 
articles were inspected to determine 
whether they met standards for return to 
stock or could be repaired to meet such 
standards. If standards could be met, the 
items were processed for return to stock on 
a priority basis established by the OQMG; 
if standards could not be met, the items 
were automatically reported as surplus. 
These steps expedited action to make items 
available for civilian needs. 

123 (1) Address, Col Strum, OQMG, to Liaison Offs, 
WDGS, 13 Jan 47, sub: Problems and Plans of QM 
Surplus Disposal, pp. 1-2. (2) Lt Col W. C. Strum, 
"Disposition of Surplus Property," QMR, XXVI 
(May-June 1947), 35-36. 



Elimination of Surplus Property 

By the end of 1946 the bulk of Quarter- 
master declarations of surplus at the depot 
level had been made. Most Quartermaster 
declarations during the last half of 1946 
came from one source, namely, surplus 
authorized items that did not meet the 
standards for Army stocks. It was antic- 
ipated that future declarations would con- 
tinue to come from this source. 124 

Quartermaster declarations of surplus 
from the beginning of disposal activity had 
exceeded removal or delivery orders issued 
by the disposing agencies. The failure to 
remove surplus property promptly caused 
a huge backlog to accumulate in Quarter- 
master depots, posing problems not only of 
space but also of care and handling. Each 
installation having custody of surplus 
property was required to submit monthly 
reports to the Chief of Finance on the costs 
of the care and handling of such property 
in order that reimbursement might be se- 
cured from the disposal agencies. Approxi- 
mately one year after the end of the war, 
surplus property occupied 14 percent of 
QMC net usable warehouse and shed 
space and 1 1 percent of net usable open 

The backlog of Quartermaster property 
awaiting removal by disposal agencies was 
valued at $341,000,000 on 31 January 
1947. It constituted one of the largest 
backlogs among the technical services, 

representing one fourth of the total 
amount. By that date the disposal agencies 
had removed $541,000,000 of the $882,- 
000,000 in surplus property made avail- 
able to them by the QMC since June 
1944. 126 They were beginning to make an 
appreciable dent in this backlog and by 
the end of the year had reduced it to 
$50,400,000. By the close of 1948 it was 
virtually eliminated. 127 

During the years 1941-45 such factors 
as changes in the strategic situation, tech- 
nological improvements, blind buying 
early in the war, and the difficulties in de- 
termining precise needs months in advance 
were responsible for the creation of surplus 
property. After V-J Day the difficulty of 
estimating precise requirements for an 
Army whose size was subject to change as 
a result of the shifting political and inter- 
national developments, as well as the effect 
of future technological improvements, 
assured a continuing trickle of surplus 
property. Thus it could never be elim- 
inated entirely, although for all practical 
purposes the disposal of surplus property 
had been reduced to normal operating 
status three years after World War II had 

Address, Col Strum, OQMG, to Liaison Offs, 
WDGS, 13 Jan 47, sub: Problems and Plans of QM 
Surplus Disposal, p. 7. 

125 SR 350, 19 Aug 46. 

126 SR 466, 20 Feb 47. 

127 Statistical Yearbook of the Quartermaster Corps, 1948, 
pp. 81-82. The backlog amounted to $1,400,000. 


Statistical Review of 
Quartermaster Supply 

The importance of the supply function 
of the Quartermaster Corps is indicated 
by the fact that of the seven technical serv- 
ices under the jurisdiction of the Army 
Service Forces, the Corps ranked second 
only to the Ordnance Department in the 
dollar value of supplies procured for and 
delivered to the Army in World War II. 
Procurement deliveries represented a 
major part of the expenditures by ASF 
agencies, whose chief task was to provide 
and maintain the materiel required by the 
Army. The estimated value of these sup- 
plies, exclusive of petroleum products, 
totaled $69,248,874,000 for the period 
from January 1942 through December 
1945. The value of QMC deliveries 
amounted to $21,711,572,000, or nearly 
one third of the Army supply program. 1 

Procurement activities were centered 
largely in the Ordnance Department and 
the QMC, and these two technical services 
delivered more than 80 percent of the sup- 
plies required by the Army. That the 
Ordnance Department procured the 
larger dollar volume is accounted for 
primarily by the fact that it supplied such 
large and costly munitions items as tanks, 
artillery, self-propelled guns, and motor 

vehicles, as well as ammunition of all 
kinds. In contrast, the QMC was called 
upon to provide in enormous quantities 
thousands of types of small and relatively 
inexpensive articles, such as socks, shirts, 
shoes, undergarments, canned goods, per- 
ishable foods, shaving brushes, sleeping 
bags, knives, canteen cups, soap, and 
paper. At the same time the QMC did 
procure many kinds of expensive service 
and warehouse equipment — mobile repair 
units, fumigation chambers, mobile bath 
units, tractors, cranes, and fork-lift 
trucks — but their total cost of $351,136,- 
000 amounted to only a fraction of the 
aggregate value of Quartermaster pro- 
curement. 2 

The provision of food for the Army was 
the most costly of all the supply functions 
performed by the QMC, subsistence pro- 
curement amounting to $1 1,392,689,000, 
or more than 52 percent of th e total Qu ar- 
termaster deliveries shown in |Tablel? The 
cost of clothing the Army was less than 
half that of feeding the men, procurement 
deliveries of all clothing items aggregating 
$5,452,286,000. The value of clothing, in 

See | Table 2~] 
'■ See | Table 3T| 



Table 2 — Estimated Value of ASF Procurement Deliveries: January 1942- 

December 1945 * 

(In Thousands of Dollars) 

Technical Service 


Ordnance Department 

Quartermaster Corps 

Corps of Engineers 

Signal Corps 

Transportation Corps 

Chemical Warfare Service 
Medical Department 


369, 248, 874 

34, 163,063 
4, 853, 759 
3, 962, 487 
2,072, 523 
1, 699, 352 
786, 121 




° Excludes petroleum and petroleum products, coal and other fueli, and building and coeht ruction materials. 
Sourer: Statistics, April 1952 draft, Procurement Sec., MS in OCMH. 

Table 3 — Value of QMC Procurement Deliveries by Major-Item Group: 1942-1945 1 

[In Thousands of Dollars) 

Calendar Year 






Service and 

Total _ 




32, 809,936 

21, 705, 525 

3351, 136 


4, 322, 954 
5, 260, 405 
6, 554, 042 
5, 574, 171 

2, 300, 269 
4, 106,924 
3, 414, 534 

1, 197, 256 
1, 229, 144 

772, 003 
583, 160 

361, 759 
593, 280 

122, 130 





• Eiclusive of petroleum products. 

Sower: Statistics, April 1952 draft, Procurement Sec, Tabic PR-3, p. 17, MS in OCMH. 

turn, exceeded the combined value of all 
the other major item groups. 

With the huge expansion of the Army 
in 1942, requirements for subsistence and 
clothing, and to a certain extent equipage, 
were immediate. While the issue of many 
types of supplies needed by the soldiers 
could be temporarily deferred, the men 
had to be clothed and fed from the 
moment they entered the service. Conse- 
quently Quartermaster purchases and de- 

liveries had to be stepped up at once to 
meet the unprecedented demands placed 
upon the Corps, which at the same time 
was faced with the task of providing hous- 
ing and transportation for the rapidly 
growing Army. The increase in procure- 
ment of Quartermaster items after Pearl 
Harbor was phenomenal. Total deliveries 
by the agency in the calendar year 1942 
amounted to $4,322,954,000. This was in 
sharp contrast to the total QMC expendi- 



tures of only $200,000,000, including 
operating costs, for the fiscal year 1940 — 
the last complete fiscal year before the 
United States undertook extensive mobi- 
lization under the Selective Service Act of 
September 1940. 3 

The first year after Pearl Harbor was a 
period when the procurement efforts of the 
Corps were thoroughly absorbed in pro- 
viding the Army with initial equipment, 
in supplying similar equipment for the 
Allies, and in filling the distribution pipe- 
line, building reserves, and furnishing the 
operational requirements for the troops 
engaged in defensive actions in the Pacific, 
and for the landing operations in North 
Africa in 1942 and in Sicily and on the 
Italian mainland in 1943. 

In the calendar year 1943 the total 
value of Quartermaster procurement de- 
liveries, exclusive of petroleum products, 
increased to $5,260,405,000. It reached a 
peak of $6,554,042,000 in 1944— the year 
the Allies invaded France and launched 
their all-out drive against Germany. The 
monthly rate of expenditures in 1945 was 
higher than in 1944, and had the war not 
ended in August total procurement de- 
liveries for 1945 would have far exceeded 
those for the preceding year. As it was, the 
total for the first eight months of 1945 
amounted to slightly more than $5,000,- 

Despite the sharp rise in total procure- 
ment volume as the war progressed, the 
trend in deliveries of clothing and equi- 
page, after the early period of hurried 
mobilization, was downward during 1943 
and the first half of 1944. Both of these 
groups of major items followed the same 
procurement -delivery pattern. They start- 
ed to decline simultaneously early in 1943 
after reaching their wartime peaks in the 
fourth quarter of 1942, but eighteen 

months later, in the second half of 1944, 
they both began to climb again, as illus- 
trated in the following quarterly break- 
down of deliveries: 4 

Quarter Clothing Equipage 
( Thousands o f Dollars ) 


First $215,553 $100,016 

Second 304,254 174,210 

Third 417,601 314,488 

Fourth 482,643 351,393 


First 481,714 283,237 

Second 402,222 192,110 

Third 385,620 155,713 

Fourth 336,279 140,948 


First 289,699 102,786 

Second 283,283 92,125 

Third 293,700 133,219 

Fourth 330,575 186,536 


First 370,242 193,266 

Second 459,067 226,497 

The downward trend resulted largely 
from a re-examination of the supply pro- 
gram of the War Department in terms of 
the changed logistical situation. The 
Army's most pressing needs for initial 
equipment had been met by late 1942; the 
pipeline had been stocked to meet the 
bulk of current demands; and the pressure 
for immediate delivery of goods had been 
eased. The second phase of war produc- 
tion, in which procurement had to be 

The Budget of the United States for the Fiscal Tear 
Ending June 30, 1942 (Washington, 1941), p. A-74. 
Actual expenditures of the QMC for the fiscal year 
1940 are listed at $197,998,828. Procurement deliv- 
eries on a calendar-year basis before 1 942 are not 
obtainable with reasonable effort and research. 

4 Statistics, a volume in preparation for the series 
April 1952 draft, Procurement Sec, MS in OGMH. 



scheduled to meet estimated replacements 
and operational requirements, was begin- 
ning. The higher echelons of the War 
Department became more aware of the 
serious repercussions that could arise from 
the accumulation of excess goods, particu- 
larly when it was at the expense of civilian 
production, and they placed greater em- 
phasis on minimum inventories. Increas- 
ingly, they felt the need to correlate 
procurement more closely with consump- 
tion. To promote this correlation, the 
OQMG initiated studies that resulted in a 
more realistic estimation of requirements 
as well as a more accurate establishment 
of stock levels. These developments cul- 
minated in a more effective stock control 

In effect, the OQMG took steps to 
schedule deliveries to correspond more 
closely with actual requirements. For this 
purpose it established a Master Produc- 
tion Schedule that set an upper limit on 
purchases and controlled the rate at which 
required production was to take place. 
Furthermore, the Quartermaster depots 
made efforts to reduce buying not con- 
trolled by such schedules. 

The net result of all this was a down- 
ward revision of requirements and a cut- 
back in the procurement of most Quarter- 
master items, particularly clothing and 
equipage items. For example, War 
Department apprehension over the size of 
the duck and webbing inventory — textiles 
used in the production of tents and various 
items of personal equipage — resulted in a 
sharp curtailment and cancellation of 
duck and webbing contracts late in 1943. 
From approximately 72 million yards in 
the fourth quarter of 1942, the duck and 
webbing pool "pulled down the duck de- 
liveries for the second, third and fourth 
quarters of 1943 to 37 million, 8 million 

and 2 million yards respectively." The de- 
cline in the deliveries of all types of tents 
"slipped off to the vanishing point by the 
end of the year." 5 Similarly, production 
of worsted and woolen fabrics for the 
Army was cut in half by the spring of 
1944. R 

This downward trend was further stim- 
ulated in the summer of 1944 by the gen- 
erally accepted belief that the war in 
Europe would end shortly. In terms of this 
shortened-war thinking, stock levels were 
considered adequate and the accumula- 
tion of surplus stocks was deemed undesir- 
able. The pressure for smaller inventories 
was thereby increased. 

Contributing to the downward trend 
was the introduction of new items of cloth- 
ing and equipment developed to replace 
old items — for example, the use of the 
wool sleeping bag in lieu of two woollen 
blankets. Procurement deliveries declined 
because, on the one hand, old items were 
cut back sharply in production, while, on 
the other, the shift to the manufacture of 
new items required time to build up de- 
liveries. Thus the introduction of the wool 
sleeping bag resulted in very small require- 
ments for woolen blankets, and deliveries 
dropped abruptly during the summer of 
1944. Depot stocks, however, were con- 
sidered adequate to meet all requirements 
from the field, but a precarious stock-level 
position developed by mid-September 
when a huge requisition, soon to be sup- 
plemented by others, was received from 
the ETO as a result of the slow shipments 
of wool sleeping bags and the necessity for 
conducting a strenuous winter campaign. 

r ' Rpt, Col. Robert T, Stevens and Ralph A. But- 
land, 20 Aug 45, sub: Supplement to QMC Duck and 
Webbing Pool Rpt of 1 Feb 44, p. 3. 

6 Memo, Col Stevens, Deputy Dir of Purch, Pro- 
curement Div, OQMG, for CG ASF, 10 May 44, sub: 
Brief Picture of Worsted and Woolen Industry. 



Table 4 — Deliveries of Selected Clothing, Equipment, and Supply Items " 

[Thousands of Units] 6 








~ ■ 

Belt, waist web, M193 7 _. 



10, 052 



Coat, wool serge, o. d. . . _ _ _ . _ 






Drawers, cotton shorts- . _ . - 


36, 121 

32, 940 

46, 658 

43, 739 

Jacket, field, M1943 


7, 470 

9, 700 

Jacket, field, wool, o. d. ... . _ . ... 



Shirt, flannel, o. d., coat style. 


16, 922 

20, 176 



Shoes, service, all types, men (pair) 

13, 029 



6, 365 


Sweater, high neck ... .... ... 




6, 937 


Trousers, cotton, khaki . _ _ 



20, 749 


10, 652 

Trousers, herringbone twill.. ... ... . 





14, 135 

Trousers, field, wool serge . 


14, 457 



12, 141 

Undershirt, wool 

8, 731 


16, 765 

7, 815 



Bag, barracks . ......... 

3, 871 

18, 273 




Bag, duffle 




Bag, sleeping, wool . .. .. _. 


5, 533 


Belt, cartridge, .30-cal., dismounted, M1923. 




1, 240 


Belt, pistol or revolver, M1923 ... _ _ 


5, 428 




Blanket, wool, o. d., M1934 



15, 265 

5, 976 


Canteen (all types) . .... 


4, 776 




Shovel, intrenching, M1910; M1943 





Tent, shelter-half. 






lent, squad, Miy*£; JYliy4S ... 



1 o 



General Supplies 



2, 951 


DDT, 100% Technical Grade (lb.) 

3, 239 

9, 103 

Drum, inflammable, S-gallon.- ... . 

( c ) 


14, 291 

4, 157 


Insecticide, freon aerosal, 1-lb. dispenser (lb.) _ _ 


4, 438 

12, 847 

15, 146 

Insecticide, powder, louse, 2-oz. can (can) 

12, 138 

27, 343 

20, 610 

i i ±1. in *J in i 

Methyl Bromide, 20-cc. ampules.. . 

17, 542 

12, 446 


Repellent, insect, 2-oz. (bottle) 


70, 482 

129, 018 

37, 579 

Soap, laundry, ordinary issue (lb.) 



57, 583 

265, 238 

299, 375 

Stove, gasoline, M1941; M1942.. _ 






Service Equipment 

Bath unit, field, mobile (each) . 






Laundry, mobile, 2-wheel, trailer-type (each) _ . _ _ 






Trailer, 2-wheel, shoe repair (each) 






Trailer, warehouse (each) . 



30, 738 

32, 687 

17, 292 

Truck, fork-lift, 2,000-lb. (each) 



1, 117 



Truck, fork-lift, 3,000-lb. (each)- . 






Truck, fork-lift, 6,000-lb. (each). .. 




4, 403 


* Includes deliveries for Army, Air forces, and civilian components. 

* Except when designated each. 
'Data not available. 

d Not procured by QMC prior to 1943. 

Source: 1949 Statisticai Yearbook of tht QuarttrmasUr Corpr, pp. 22-26- 



Deliveries of woolen blankets had to be 
stepped up sharply at that time, and they 
continued at a high rate to the end of the 
war in order to provide for the increasing 
numbers of displaced persons and prison- 
ers of war as well as to meet the needs of 
the armed forces. 7 

Still another factor influencing the 
downward trend was the effect of the 
greatly expanded program of conservation 
and reclamation on procurement. Once 
initial issue had been accomplished, cloth- 
ing and equipage items could be re- 
claimed, repaired, and returned to use, 
thus saving millions of dollars that other- 
wise would have had to be spent for the 
purchase of replacement items. In con- 
trast, the reclamation program had no 
application to food and other expendable 
items, such as soap, paper, insecticides, or 
repellents. Their consumption necessitated 
new purchases to meet Army demands. 

Procurement deliveries of clothing and 
equipage began to rise sharply in the 
fourth quarter of 1944. It had become ob- 
vious by then that the war in Europe was 
not going to end in 1944, and that not only 
would supply lines have to be maintained 
but requisitions would have to be revised 
upward in the light of the tactical situ- 
ation. For example, on the assumption 
that housing on the Continent would be 
practically nonexistent for American 
troops as a result of bombings and the 
need to provide shelter for displaced per- 
sons, the Chief Quartermaster, ETO, 
increased tentage requirements enor- 
mously in the fall. The schedule for squad 
tents alone jumped from a monthly re- 
quirement of approximately 28,000 in 
October to 44,000 in December and up to 
100,000 per month in April 1945. 8 

The most influential factor contributing 
to the rise in procurement deliveries of 

clothing and equipage, however, was the 
higher rate of replacements necessitated 
by the commitment of a much larger pro- 
portion of the armed forces to battle fol- 
lowing the invasion of Normandy. The 
greater attrition of clothing and equipage 
items in battle — that is, the more exten- 
sive wear and tear and losses — resulted in 
an increased rate of replacements that was 
reflected in larger requistions. The ETO 
demands for woolens and worsteds brought 
a sharp rise in the delivery of these textiles 
and the end items manufactured from 
them. 9 At the same time, experience re- 
vealed that cotton fabrics did not have as 
long a life in the damp and heat of the 
tropics as they did in other areas occupied 
by American troops, and the rate of issue 
in the Pacific also had to be increased. 

It was primarily the ever-increasing de- 
mand for subsistence that accounted for 
the steady rise in total Quartermaster 
procurement deliveries through the war 
years. Deliveries of general supplies also 
contributed in part to this trend. While 
both of these major groups of commodities 
were affected in the first half of 1943 by 
the cutbacks that resulted from War De- 
partment efforts to correlate procurement 
more closely with consumption, the up- 
swing in deliveries was halted for only a 
brief period. After mid- 1943 deliveries of 
both began to rise sharply again, a full 

7 (1) Special Rpt, Statistics Br, OP&C Div, to 
TQMG, Nov 45, sub: Wool Blankets: Supply Sum- 
mary, World War II, pp. 4 A, 6, 2 1 . (2) For annual 
deliveries of blankets and wool sleeping bags, see 

8 (1) Rpt, Stevens and Butland, 20 Aug 45, sub: 
Supplement to QMC Duck and Webbing Pool Rpt 
of 1 Feb 44, p. 7. (2) See l'l able 4| for increases in de- 
liveries from 1944 to 1945. (3) Memo, Maj Gen 
Robert M. iiittlejohn, CQM ETO, for Maj Gen Ed- 
mund B. Gregory, 12 Jul 44, sub: Heavy Tentage for 
ETO, 321 (ETO). 

9 For example, no te delive ries of wool field jackets 
and wool trousers in |Table T} 



year in advance of the increases in the 
clothing and equipage groups. Deliveries 
of general supplies, although rising steadily 
during 1944, never quite reached the peak 
attained in the fourth quarter of 1942. 
Subsistence deliveries, however, showed a 
consistent and enormous expansion 
throughout the period ending with the 
second quarter of 1945, when the dollar 
volume was almost double that of the 
fourth quarter of 1942, as shown in the 
following quarterly analysis: 10 


Quarter Subsistence Supplies 

(Thousands of Dollars) 


First $151,512 $31,412 

Second 316,949 45,246 

Third 474,840 107,982 

Fourth 627,661 177,119 


First 506,070 115,277 

Second 486,357 102,075 

Third 623,799 1 10,485 

Fourth 684,043 132,331 


First 914,384 129,418 

Second 1,006,767 135,931 

Third 1,014,849 158,129 

Fourth 1,170,924 169,802 


First 1,113,930 95,023 

Second 1,172,486 112,425 

Initially the volume of subsistence pro- 
curement increased in relative proportion 
to the growth of the Army, that is, to the 
number of men to be fed every day. Once 
the armed forces reached their full growth, 
it could be anticipated that subsistence 
procurement would tend to level off. Even 
before that, however, the Army was sad- 
dled with a new burden — that of feeding 
prisoners of war and great numbers of 
civilians in occupied areas. Provision of 

food for the Italian people, for example, 
became a serious problem first in Sicily 
and then on the Italian mainland where it 
was found that the destructive effects of 
war had reduced the Fascist economy to a 
chaotic state and had left the country un- 
able to feed itself. The food shortage 
reached such an acute stage late in 1943 
that steps had to be taken to ship large 
quantities of basic foods, especially wheat 
and flour, to Italy. In November of that 
year responsibility for feeding the civilians 
in Italy and other liberated areas was as- 
signed to the War Department with the re- 
sult that procurement deliveries of subsist- 
ence increased radically, beginning in 
1944 and continuing to the end of the war. 
For instance, nearly two billion pounds of 
flour were delivered to the Army, civilian 
aid, and other government agencies in 
1944, in contrast to only three quarters of 
a billion pounds in 1943. In 1945 upwards 
of three and a half billion pounds were 
delivered. 11 

Although total procurement deliveries 
in the commodity group comprising serv- 
ice and warehousing equipment were 
relatively small, the $30,000,000 expended 
for items delivered in 1942 was particu- 
larly insignificant when compared with 
expenditures for items in other major 
groups that year, or for that matter when 
compared with those in its own group in 
1943 and 1944. 12 One of the reasons for 
this was that many new items of service 
equipment, such as mobile repair, laundry, 
and bath units, were developed and pro- 
cured fairly late in the war. Another factor 
was'the difficulties experienced in obtain- 

10 Statistics, April 1952 draft, Procurement Sec, MS 
in OCMH. 

" (1) Robert W. Homer, Civil Affairs and Military 
Government in the Mediterra nean The ater (n. d.) 
Ch. VI, copy in O CMH. (2) See [Table 5j 

12 See |TtbTe"T1 


Table 5 — Deliveries of a Few Selected Subsistence Items 

[Millions of Pounds] 








40. 1 




















3. 1 


6. 1 









331. 2 

211. 4 

381. 3 

598. 4 







1, 956. 3 

3, 338. 7 


196. 1 




562. 1 

902. 1 




325. 1 












62. 1 






128. 1 




472. 7 

175. 5 

207. 7 

83. 1 



1, 038. 

1, 135.2 

76. 1 












( 6 ) 




( l ) 








( k ) 



179. 1 

( 4 ) 




Non-perishable Subsistence 

Apples, canned 

Bacon, canned 

Beans, dry, white 

Beef, corned, canned 

Butter, stabilized, canned 

Cabbage, dehydrated 

Chicken and turkey, boned, canned 


Coffee, green basis 

Eggs, whole, dried 

Flour, wheat, white 

Juice, citrus (all kinds) _ 

Milk, evaporated 

Peas, green, canned 

Pork and gravy, canned 

Potatoes, white, dehydrated 

Salmon, canned 

Sausage, pork, canned 

Stew, meat and vegetables, canned 

Tomatoes, canned 

Perishable Subsistence ' 


Butter, fresh 

Cheese, cheddar 

Eggs, fresh 

Ham, cured 

Pork, fresh 

Poultry (all kinds) 

Sausage (all kinds) 

Vegetables, frozen 

» Includes deliveries for Army, civilian aid, foreign aid, and other government Agencies. 
b Data not available. 

e Includes receipts from procurement and direct shipments (Army only). 

d Total purchases of smoked bacon and smoked ham were 328 million pounds. 

Saura: 1949 Statistical Ytarbaak of tlu QuarUrmasUr Corps, pp. 28-29. 

ing deliveries of the warehousing equip- 
ment needed to handle the increasing 
volume of Quartermaster tonnage. These 
difficulties were caused by the lack of ade- 

quate facilities at first to produce this 
equipment as well as the shortages of steel 
and other materials and the low priorities 
placed on these materials for the manufac- 



Table 6 — Purchases Directed by Office, Quartermaster General of Petroleum 
Products by Major Commodities: 1 June 1943-31 August 1945 

Value, Quantity, and Commodities 


Jun-Dec 1943 

Jan-Dec 1944 

Jan-Auft 1945 



Gasoline for Internal Combustion Engines 

Burning Fuels. 

Diesel Fuels 

Automotive Engine Oils 

Gear Lubricants 

Solvent, Dry Cleaning 

Fuel Oils- 

Other Lubricating Oils and Specialties 

Automotive Greases 

Other Lubricating Greases and Specialties 


Gasoline for Internal Combustion Engines, gallons 

Burning Fuels, gallons 

Diesel Fuels, gallons 

Automotive Engine Oils, gallons 

Gear Lubricants, gallons 

Solvent, Dry Cleaning, gallons 

Fuel Oils, gallons 

Other Lubricating Oils and Specialties, gallons 

Automotive Greases, pounds 

Other Lubricating Greases and Specialties, pounds 

3337, 579, 573 

380, 265, 463 

3127, 872, 445 

3129, 441, 665 

212, 500, 251 
9, 745, 194 
73, 291, 772 
11, 836,511 

1, 878, 955 
622, 698 

6, 823, 803 
6, 338, 377 

2, 823,093 

2, 427,550,953 
187, 203, 291 
149,044, 551 
22, 258, 530 
14, 307, 576 
35,719, 257 
89, 050, 299 
41, 128, 339 

40, 286, 403 
932, 157 

2, 626, 669 
30, 795, 733 

2, 791, 176 
125, 109 

1,459, 342 

17,015, 487 
49, 583,075 
52, 447, 426 
4, 431,959 
861, 661 
2, 586, 354 
1, 104,982 
23,095, 221 
12, 842, 395 

87, 335, 600 
4, 765, 393 
4, 539, 594 

20, 248, 880 
3, 982, 352 
1, 550, 676 
442, 605 

1, 749, 950 

2, 508, 301 
749, 094 

954, 309, 338 
70, 077, 445 
97,481, 833 
45, 822, 996 
8, 127, 102 
14, 144, 654 
11, 636,218 
10, 159, 752 
32, 677, 177 
11,309, 135 

84, 878, 248 
2, 578,931 

22, 247,159 
5, 062, 983 
203, 170 
7, 782 
4, 743, 194 
1, 328, 095 

86, 726, 083 
40, 138, 383 
50,774, 129 
9, 699, 469 
24, 454, 523 
33, 277, 901 
16, 976, 809 

* Represents purchases for overseas shipments only; does not include those of posts, camps, and stations in zone of interior. 

Source: Compiled from data submitted to Hist Sec by Statistical Sv Sec, Purchase Br, Fuels and Lubricants Div, OQMG, 3 Dec 45. 

ture of such equipment. They were finally 
overcome when the growing manpower 
shortage underscored the urgency for 
higher priorities that resulted in increased 
production of such mechanical handling 
equipment as fork-lift trucks, cranes, ware- 
house trailers, and conveyors of various 
types. More than 75 percent of the deliv- 
eries of service and warehousing equip- 
ment were made in the two years 1943 and 
1944. By 1945 the requirements for items 
in this major group had largely been met. 

Petroleum products, while constituting 
another major commodity group in war- 

time expenditures, are omitted from Quar- 
termaster procurement deliveries shown in 
| Table 3^ primarily because complete and 
adequate statistics are not available. It was 
the spring of 1943 before the QMC be- 
came responsible for the purchase of most 
petroleum products used by the Army, 
with the notable exception of fuels and 
lubricants for aircraft. 13 Before that time 
each supply service purchased its own 
petroleum products, a procedure that re- 

13 Other exceptions were recoil and hydraulic oils, 
purchased by the Ordnance Department, and asphalt, 
procured by the Corps of Engineers. 



Table 7 — Value of Quartermaster Lend-Lease Shipments a 

[In Thousands of Dollars! 

Calendar Year 


Clothing and 


Other Items » 


3867, 000 

3634, 000 











1945 (Jan-Aug)' 

* Excludes transfers made in theaters of operation. 

* Excludes petroleum, oils and lubricants. 

* Includes shipments amounting to approximately 36,000,000 made subsequent to August 1945 in closing out the lend-lease program. 
Source Compiled for Hist Sec by Office of Management, OQMG, Oct 51, 

suited in chaotic procurement conditions. 
Even within the QMC no central control 
of petroleum purchases existed and no 
adequate system of records was developed. 
In short, procurement of petroleum prod- 
ucts was completely decentralized and un- 

Efforts to centralize procurement of 
petroleum products for the Army culmi- 
nated in the establishment of the Fuels 
and Lubricants Division in the OQMG on 
1 June 1943. Thereafter statistics on over- 
seas shipments were compiled. From that 
date until the end of the war the value of 
purchases directed by the division for 
overseas shipments amounted to approxi- 
mately $337,580,000, of which gasoline for 
internal combustion engines accounted for 
about $213,000,000, or nearly two thirds 
of the total. 14 

Unfortunately, statistics are not readily 
available for deliveries of petroleum prod- 
ucts to the posts, camps, and stations in the 
zone of interior because such purchases 
were not handled by the OQMG. Instead, 
the Procurement Division of the Treasury 
Department executed consolidated con- 
tracts for gasoline, fuel oil, and diesel fuel 

for the Army upon which the posts, camps, 
and stations drew to meet their require- 
ments. Moreover, lubricating oil for the 
Army was purchased on Navy Department 
contracts when a station needed ten gal- 
lons or more for a three-month period. In 
addition, a certain amount of local pro- 
curement was permitted in emergencies. 
Under these circumstances compilation of 
total procurement deliveries in the zone of 
interior proved a hopeless task. 

Includ ed in p rocurement deliveries 
shown in |Table 3| are purchases of certain 
Quartermaster items made by the Corps 
to meet requirements for lend-lease and 
direct aid to civilians in occupied and lib- 
erated areas through the period ending 31 
August 1945. During the four and a half 
years of lend-lease operations the QMC 
shipped supplies valued at $867,000,000 to 
Allied countries. 15 This was exclusive of 
the Quartermaster supplies that were 
transferred from Army stocks within the 
various theaters and for which no statis- 
tics are available. Inasmuch as lend-lease 
shipments were utilized largely for the 

1H See 

Table 6. 

15 See 

Table /. 



Table 8 — Distribution of Quartermaster Lend-Lease Shipments 

(In Thousands of Dollars] 

Calendar Year 


Soviet Union 

United Kingdom 

Other Countries 


?867, 000 


3295, 000 

?142, 000 





















1945 (Jan-Aug) 6 





° Excludes petroleum, oils and lubricants and also transfers made in theaters of operation. 

b Includes shipments amounting to approximately ?6,000,000 made subsequent to August 1945 in closing out the lend-lease program. 
Source: Compiled for Hist Sec by Office of Management, OQMG, Oct 51. 

outfitting of Allied troops, clothing and 
textiles and equipage constituted the bulk 
of the QMC purchases for the lend-lease 
program. Shipments of clothing and tex- 
tiles alone amounted to $634,000,000, 
while those for equipage totaled $ 1 32,000,- 
000, and all other Quartermaster items 
only $101,000,000. 

Of all the countries participating in the 
lend-lease program, the Union of Soviet 
Socialist Republics received by far the 
largest share of Quartermaster shipments. 
Supplies valued at $430,000,000, or ap- 
proximately half of the QMC dollar vol- 
ume of lend-lease procurement, were con- 
signed to that country, the principal items 
shipped being bulk leather, Russian-type 
shoes, and overcoating. 16 Shipments to the 
United Kingdom amounted to $295,000,- 
000, or about one third of the QMC total, 
and were comprised largely of suiting, cot- 
ton textiles, and battle-dress uniforms for 
British troops. The cost of outfitting French 
forces, beginning with the Tunisia Cam- 
paign and accelerating to the end of the 
war in Europe, accounted for a large por- 
tion of the $142,000,000 in Quartermaster 
supplies distributed among numerous 
other countries. 

Shipments of Quartermaster supplies 
for civilians in occupied and liberated 
areas were valued at approximately $878,- 
1 56,000 for the period 1 July 1943 through 
31 August 1945. 17 This amount was 
slightly larger than the dollar volume of 
Quartermaster lend-lease shipments de- 
spite the fact that the civilian- aid program 
did not begin until mid- 1943. The feeding 
of civilians was the most serious problem 
faced by the Allies in the occupied coun- 
tries, and shipments of foodstuffs alone 
amounted to $669,251,000, or more than 
75 percent of the QMC civilian supply 
shipments. Clothing, shoes, and textiles, 
which constituted the bulk of Quartermas- 
ter lend-lease shipments, were a relatively 
small part of the civilian-aid program, 
though they were valued at $131,000,000. 
On a tonnage basis, shipments of wheat 
and flour were far ahead of all other Quar- 
termaster major-item groups, with coal 
ranking second. In the cases of both lend- 
lease and civilian aid, liquid fuels and 

(l) See lTable 8.| (2) See also Richard M. Leigh- 
Con and Robert W. Coakley, Global Logistics and 
Strategy: 1940-1943, in UNITED STATES ARMY IN 
WORL D WAR I I (Washington, 1955). 
17 See |Table 9.] 



Table 9 — Quartermaster Civilian Supply Shipments to All Liberated Areas: 

1 July 1943 Through 31 August 1945 

Commodity Group 


Wheat and Flour 

Other Foodstuffs 

Sanitary Supplies 



Gothing, Shoes, and Textiles 

Agricultural Supplies and Equipment.. 
Miscellaneous Manufactured Products. 

Value • 

Weight ^ 


6, 310, 395 

309, 934,000 


359, 317,000 

1, 086, 880 


2, 899 


26, 472 


2, 101,942 


50, 328 

7, 705, 000 



42, 165 

° Dollar values are stated a9 "landed cost," which covers coat of merchandise, packing, inland freight, storage and handling charges en 
route to port, ocean transportation, insurance, and other eipenset incurred in delivery of goods at end of ship's tackle at port of final de- 

* Gross long tons. 

Source: Compiled by International Br, Supply Div, Office of ACofS G-4, Oct 51. 

lubricants were supplied by theater com- 
manders from military stocks overseas and 
consequently were not included in the 

The storage and distribution of the bil- 
lions of dollars worth of Quartermaster 
supplies procured in the United States for 
use of troops in the zone of interior and for 
the Army, Allies, and civilians in occupied 
and liberated areas overseas was a respon- 
sibility of the Quartermaster depot system. 
To meet this task the system was greatly 
expanded and vastly improved during the 
war. Not only were the existing depots en- 
larged and many new ones added, but 
millions of square feet of commercial ware- 
house space were utilized to supplement 
the Quartermaster facilities. Much of this 
space was leased and operated by the 
QMC itself, though a considerable portion 
was merely rented by the Corps and con- 
tinued under private management. 

In 1940, before the big expansion pro- 
gram began, there were seven Quarter- 
master depots and five general depots that 

the Corps occupied jointly with the other 
supply services. Most of the depots were 
relatively small, the total permanent 
warehouse space under control of or in use 
by the QMC amounting to only 7,700,000 
square feet. 18 At that time the depots were 
concentrated largely in the northeastern 
part of the country, with only two west of 
the Mississippi River and one in the 

The depot expansion program was vir- 
tually completed by 1943. To meet the 
needs of a global war, the system had been 
radically reshuffled to provide storage 
facilities at strategic locations throughout 
the United States. Most of the new depots 
were established in the general vicinity of 
ports of embarkation or near important 
manufacturing centers. In all, eleven 
Quartermaster depots, seven subdepots, 
and eleven Quartermaster sections in gen- 
eral (later ASF) depots were handling 

ls Alvin P. Stauffer, Quartermaster Depot Storage and 
Distribution Operations, QMC Historical Studies, 18 
(Washington, 1948), p. 17. 



Table 10 — Net Usable Storage Space Operated by the Quartermaster Corps in the 

Continental United States 

[Thousands of Square Feet] 





Covered 6 

Open « 

Covered 6 

Open ■ 

Covered * 

Open • 

Covered * 

Open « 


24, 735 


27, 701 





24, 424 

6, 107 

27, 778 







28, 077 

7, 254 

27, 828 


( J ) 


25, 776 


28, 195 

6, 575 

27, 724 






27, 838 


27, 759 

6, 631 





27, 819 



6, 286 



26, 128 


27, 597 



6, 665 


( d ) 



27, 693 


27, 533 




27, 588 


27, 580 



7, 271 


2, 581 

27, 654 


27, 672 


30, 887 


24, 190 


27, 358 

7, 106 

27, 578 






27, 565 


27, 856 



20, 963 











December. . 


■ Includes Quartermaster depots and Quartermaster sections of general depots. 

* Includes warehouse and shed space available for bulk storage; excludes aisles, receiving and shipping areas, and bin storage area. Prior 
to September 1943 bin storage area is included. 

' Includes high grade and semifinished hards tanding plus unimproved open area actually occupied. 

* Data not available. 

Source: 1949 Statistical Yearbook of the Quartermaster Corps, p. 41. 

Quartermaster supplies. As a result of this 
expansion program, the total net usable 
storage space operated by the Corps 
amounted to approximately 30,000,000 
square feet. By the time the Army had 
reached the peak of its strength this space 
had grown to 35,000,000 square feet, pri- 
marily through the leasing of commercial 
storage space, including cold-storage and 
dry-storage facilities for perishable and 
nonperishable foods. Net usable space op- 
erated by the QMC was further increased 
to more than 52,000,000 square feet late 
in 1945, when, with the war at an end, 
shipments declined and surpluses began 
piling up in the depots. 18 

Storage space is of two distinct types — 
covered and open. Covered, which in- 
cludes warehouse and shed space, was in 
greatest demand during the war and natu- 
rally was the most critical. Open hard- 

standing areas could be constructed 
cheaply and quickly but did not afford 
adequate protection for many kinds of 
Quartermaster supplies. Occupancy of 
open unimproved areas increased during 
the latter part of 1943 and most of 1944, 
yet they represented a comparatively 
small part of the total QMC storage space, 
averaging less than 2,500,000 square feet 
in 1944 and approximately 1,500,000 
square feet in the first half of 1945. 20 Cov- 
ered space, as indicated in l Table 10J com- 
prised approximately three fourths of the 
net usable space operated by the Corps 
during the war period. Most of the big in- 
crease in storage space after V-J Day, 
however, was in open hardstanding areas 

'"See fTable 1 Q.| 

20 ASF Monthly Progress Rpt, Sec. 2H, 30 Sep 42- 
31 Dec 45, sub: Supplement, Storage Operations, p. 

Table 11 — Tonnage Received and Shipped by Depots: September 1942-August 1945 * 

[Short Tom| 



Total Tonnage 

Year and Month 

Received and 


Total • 

To Ports of 


39, S87, 270 

20, 549, 785 

19,037, 485 

9, 774, 704 

1942 (Last 4 months) 

3, 817,023 

2, 057, 886 

1, 759, 137 



838 457 

471, 964 

366 493 

V. / 


973, 830 

588 823 

385 007 

v ) 



392, 748 

587 692 

V. / 


1, 024, 296 

604 351 

419, 945 


v. / 



5,412, 194 


1, 881, 393 

yll, 51U 

47C TOT 

475, 287 

452, ili 

99, 592 


834 622 

432 634 

401 988 

101, 952 


913, 37S 

506 780 

406, 595 



858, 770 


411, 851 

94, 571 


779 106 

401, 414 

377, 692 

112, 531 


847, 432 

399, 499 


177, 494 


937, 052 

446, 972 

490 080 

208 711 


868 355 

448 228 

420, 127 

197, 229 

Se ptem ber 

861 660 

439 554 

422, 106 

201 267 


871 518 

433, 554 

437, 964 

211, 123 


924, 221 

416, 152 

194, 858 

riprPTTi r\*»r 

Of O, JtJ 

471 7R4 


1fi7 OAi 


14, 048, 415 

7, 238, 675 

6, 809, 740 

4, 276,099 


905, o07 

467, 159 

438, 648 


Febru ary 


tUj, f It 

drtfi 868 

^IW, ouo 

701 144 


1 CI") fx 77? 

1* \Ji\Jf at / & 

?1A AAA 
jjo, Out 

107, ouo 

7<K 180 


1 fil/a <ft1 

1, UJU, JOl 

S41 1A1 


jij, no 


1 \fy% 

1, IOj, Ojj 

Al 1 077 

c C 1 £JQ 

J J i, 0/ 

14.1 qwi 

Aa\1 Al 7 

A71 504 

O^J, J7T 

iK 7^4 

?t 1 j, / ji 


1 940 110 

A18 717 


1S7 187 

JOl , JO/ 

A?1 171 

Ojl, J4J 

Ate 7ne 

4.77 Afil 
«/, Oo 1 

1 74 P. 7Afi 

A18 7CA 

Ain ni7 


41 S ADO 

October . _ 

1, 252, 429 

732, 712 



November . 

1, 390, 225 

689, 726 

700, 499 

472, 155 

December - _ . . . 



675, 395 


194S (First 8 months) 

11, 219, 868 

5, 841, 030 

5, 378, 838 


January ...... 

1, 382, 457 

650, 054 

732, 403 

505, 475 

February . . 

1, 359, 6% 

695, 431 


463, 381 

March. _ . _ 

1, 592, 472 

847, 812 


548, 117 

April. _ . . 

1, 574, 825 

802, 601 

772, 224 

549, 781 


1, 626, 098 

878, 324 

747, 774 

511, 368 


735, 770 

678, 259 

437, 038 


1, 254, 990 

619, 476 


400, 172 

August __ 


611, 562 

403, 739 

201, 880 

Includes QM Depots and QM sections of general depots only. Excludes rewa rehousing and intra-depot tonnage. 
* Data not available. 

e Includes shipments to ports of embarkation, depots, and other places. 

Sovrce: (!) 1949 Statistical Yearbook of tfu 0MC> p. 44. (2) ASF Monthly Progress Rpt, Sec. 2H, 30 Sep 42-31 Aug 45, sub: Supple- 
ment, Storage Operations, p. 38. 



hurriedly constructed or acquired to meet 
the emergency need for storing surpluses. 

Statistics on the trend of receipts and 
shipments of Quartermaster supplies at 
depots are not available before September 
1942. In the thirty-six-month period from 
that date to the end of August 1945, Quar- 
termaster depots and Quartermaster sec- 
tions of general depots handled nearly 
40,000,000 tons, excluding supplies re- 
warehoused within the depots and those 
transferred from one depot to another. 21 
The greatest volume during the war years 
was recorded in 1944 when the depots re- 
ceived and shipped a combined total of 
more than 14,000,000 tons. The average 
monthly tonnage handled in the fourth 
quarter of 1942 was larger than the 
monthly average in 1943. Beginning in 
March 1944, however, the trend was 
sharply upward; from approximately 
867,000 tons in February 1944 the volume 
had nearly doubled by May 1945, when a 
peak of more than 1,626,000 tons was 

Depot receipts followed a generally up- 
ward trend during the war, but the 
progress from month to month was quite 
erratic, particularly in 1942 and 1943. 
Thereafter they rose more steadily, reach- 
ing a peak of approximately 878,000 tons 
in May 1945. Depot shipments followed a 
somewhat more uniform course, climbing 
to a high of more than 772,000 tons in 
April 1945, a month ahead of the peak in 
receipts. Shipments exceeded receipts in 
only ten of the thirty-six months. These 
temporary net declines in depot stocks 
occurred generally at scattered intervals — 
November 1942; June, July, and October 
1943; August, November, and December 
1944; and January and July 1945. 

Depot shipments to ports of embarka- 
tion reached a peak of approximately 

550,000 tons in April 1945, shortly before 
V-E Day. These did not comprise, of 
course, all shipments to ports, since large 
quantities of Quartermaster supplies went 
directly from manufacturing plants to 
ports of embarkation. Statistics on these 
direct shipments are not available. It was 
early in 1944 before supplies shipped to 
ports by the depots began to exceed in ton- 
nage the volume furnished to troops in the 
zone of interior. Shipments to ports 
averaged about 500,000 tons per month 
during the eight-month period from No- 
vember 1944 through June 1945, account- 
ing for nearly two thirds of the total 
tonnage shipped by the depots during that 
interval. 22 

The development of mechanical ma- 
terials-handling equipment and the im- 
provement in warehousing techniques 
enabled the depots to accomplish two 
highly important objectives. One of these 
was a better utilization of existing storage 
space. The most significant factor here was 
the greatly increased use of fork-lift trucks 
and the palletization of supplies. During 
the early part of the war, when the depots 
had to depend largely upon manual labor 
and hand-operated equipment, the height 
to which supplies could be piled was 
severely restricted. The situation changed 
about the third quarter of 1943, when pro- 
duction of fork-lift trucks began to match 
demand. By mechanizing storage oper- 
ations and using palletized loads, it 
became possible to pile supplies all the 
way up to the roof beams and trusses in the 
warehouses, and thus make use of what 
formerly had been enormous quantities of 
waste space. Depot operations were rev- 
olutionized and cubic space rather than 

See Table 
: [bitf. 



Table 12 — Quartermaster Personnel and Work Load Per Employee in Storage 
Operations: September 1942-June 1945 


Storage Division 
Employees ■ 

Tons Handled Per 8-Hour 
Man-Day by Receiving and 
Shipping Employees 


Receiving and 

QMC ► 

AH Services « 

?n on t 

V J 



£% 1 / j 

\ ) 

\ ) 



26, 268 





28, 587 





zy, z^o 

\ ) 






March . . _ 

•>0 Alt 



\ ) 


\ I 

A '1 


25, 216 

[ ) 


15, 5/y 

( d\ 
\ ! 

\ ) 


Li, UUo 

( ) 

\ ) 




\ ) 


in r\tn 

iy, uiy 


\ ) 

Sj-» TiT t* IT 1 Pi P* If 

i *7 no r 

17, y»5 

o, 686 


f d\ 


20, 844 

9, 259 

A 1 A 
4. ID 

i on 


19, 998 

8, 876 




19, 323 







lo, 4oo 

7 1A Z 

C A.C 
3. tj 


17, 134 

6, 665 


J. lA 

\f arch 

1/, oUi 

o, yii 

0. 11 

j. JO 


1/, JOO 

o, 5oZ 

7 no 

j* Oj 

17 191 

6 484 



June . 

I7| 572 







8. 25 


August - 













8. 30 

4. 42 


17, 880 




December , . 

18, 540 

7, 102 


4. 73 



18, 775 

7, 196 


4. 81 


18, 773 

7, 448 


4. 98 

March _ . 

19, 179 


9. 76 

5. 38 



7, 130 




18, 376 

7, 167 

9. 19 


June, _ _ 





» Includes employees at QM depots a nd QM sec tions of general depots. 

* Tonnage received and shipped (.Sit [Tail* 77j per man-days expended by receiving and shipping employees in QM depots and QM 
sections at general depots. 

' Total tonnage received and shipped in all ASF depots per man-days expended by all receiving and shipping employees in all ASF depo' 1 - 
d Data not available. 

Souret: ASF Monthly Progress Rpt, Sec. 2H, 30 Sep 42-30 Jun 45, sub: Supplement, Storage Operations. 



square footage became the basis for com- 
puting capacities of warehouses. Moreover, 
the rapidity with which Quartermaster 
items could be moved in and out of depots 
by the use of labor-saving devices resulted 
in a much faster turnover of supplies and 
contributed to more effective utilization of 
storage space. 

Of perhaps even greater importance was 
the conservation of manpower achieved 
through the use of mechanical equipment, 
which enabled the depots to handle the 
huge increase in tonnage with fewer em- 
ployees. At first, when fork-lift trucks and 
other labor-saving devices were difficult to 
procure, the number of personnel engaged 
in storage operations at Quartermaster 
depots and Quartermaster sections of gen- 
eral depots mounted steadily — from about 
21,000 in September 1942 to a peak of 
nearly 30,000 in February 1943. 23 After 
mechanical equipment finally became 
available in sizable quantities, the number 
of storage personnel dropped sharply to 
less than 17,000 by September 1944. The 
big increase in tonnage that occurred in 
the late months of the war resulted in a 
slight upward trend in storage personnel, 
but the total never exceeded 19,200 de- 
spite the fact that the monthly volume of 

tonnage was nearly 100 percent greater 
than it had been when there were approxi- 
mately 30,000 storage employees. 

Except for a small increase toward the 
end of the war, the number of personnel 
engaged in actual shipping and receiving 
activities at the Quartermaster depots and 
Quartermaster sections of general depots 
was reduced while the total tonnage han- 
dled was increasing. 24 There were nearly 
9,300 shipping and receiving employees in 
October 1943, when the depots handled 
approximately 872,000 tons. In the peak 
month of May 1945, when the depots 
handled 1,626,000 tons of supplies, the 
number of shipping and receiving em- 
ployees had been reduced to fewer than 
7,200. During that interval the number of 
tons handled per man-day of shipping and 
receiving employees more than doubled. 
The figure was 4.1 tons per man-day in 
October 1943 and 9.19 tons per man per 
day in May 1945. The record of the QMG 
for tonnage handled per man-day was 
consistently higher than for the technical 
services as a whole, which handled only 
2.9 tons per man-day in October 1943 and 
6.14 tons per man per day in May 1945. 

" See lTable 1 27| 
3< Ibid. 



The Procurement of 
Quartermaster Enlisted 

Although the Quartermaster Corps ex- 
panded in relatively the same proportion 
as the entire Army during World War II, 
the expansion was not parallel because of 
the nature of the functions performed by 
the Corps. Its troop units increased as the 
Army increased, but its activities pertain- 
ing to construction, transportation, and 
procurement and storage of supplies ex- 
panded well in advance of the general in- 
crease in the Army. The peak of the 
Quartermaster load "comes at the begin- 
ning of mobilization when food, clothing, 
housing and transportation must be pro- 
vided immediately." 1 Consequently, 
Quartermaster personnel constituted be- 
tween 7 and 8 percent of the Army during 
the early months of the war, but only 6 
percent by March 1945. Likewise, the 
peak in QMC strength came nine months 
ahead of that of the Army as a whole, 
which was not reached until May 1945." 

When the German Army invaded 
Poland in 1939, the QMC consisted of 718 
professional Army officers and 10,545 en- 
listed men, exclusive of Philippine Scouts. 3 
From this normal peacetime strength the 
number of Quartermaster personnel mul- 
tiplied forty-five fold during the war to 

reach a peak strength in August 1944 of 
502,265. This was more than double the 
Corps' World War I peak strength of 
240,000 and nearly triple the size of the 
entire Army in August 1939. 4 Of the 
Army's seven technical services, only the 
Corps of Engineers and the Medical De- 
partment were larger than the QMC. The 
others — Signal Corps, Ordnance Depart- 
ment, Transportation Corps, and Chem- 
ical Warfare Service — were considerably 

During the emergency period the QMC 
was responsible for a wider range of duties 
than it had performed in World War I or 
was to exercise after the United States 
entered World War II. The National De- 
fense Act of 1920 had restored to the Corps 
the functions of construction, transporta- 
tion, and real estate service, which had 
been transferred elsewhere in the Army in 
World War I. These activities, however, 

1 Lecture, AIG, Brig Gen Frank F. Scowden, 
TVpnt v TQMCt, 1 4 Feb 41, sub: The QMC. 

2 Se e- Table 13.| 

3 Annual Report of the Secretary of War to the President, 
1940 (Washington, 1940), App. B, Table D. 

4 (1) Monthly RjUs AGO to WDGS, Strength of 
the Army, 1942-45. (2) Report of The Quartermaster 
General, 1919 (Washington, 1919), p. 173. 



Table 13 — Growth of the QMC and the Army: Actual Strength 
[Officers and Enlisted Men] 


30 Aug 1939. 
30 Jun 1940. 

30 Sep 1940_ 

31 Dec 1940. 

30 Jun 1941. 

31 Dec 1941. 

30 Jun 1942. 

31 Dec 1942. 

30 Jun 1943. 

31 Dec 1943. 
31 Aug 1944. 
31 Dec 1944. 
31 Mar 1945 
31 May 1945 
31 Dec 1945. 


QMC ■ 


17, 788 
31, 104 
43, 239 
101, 442 
124, 483 
226, 146 
327, 794 
436, 841 
1 502, 265 
498, 010 
491, 301 
472, 853 
268, 964 


176, 487 
264, 118 
438, 254 
620, 774 
1, 460, 998 
1, 686, 403 
3, 074, 184 
5, 397, 674 
6, 993, 102 
7, 482, 434 
8, 102, 545 
8, 052, 693 
8, 157, 386 
6 8, 291, 336 
4, 228, 936 

QMC to 

6. 38 

6. 73 
6. 93 

7. 32 

6. 25 
6. 19 
6. 19 
6. 38 

■ Figures for QMC strength represenc personnel who wore QMC insignia or were accounted for as QMC on Machine Records Unit statue 
cards. They do not necessarily represent military personnel performing Quartermaster duties, nor personnel under QMC commanders. 
» Peak. 

Source: (1) Annual Report of the Secretary of War, for 1939-41. (2) Monthly Rpts, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the Army, 1942-45. 
(3) Annual Report of the Secretary of the Army, 1948, pp. 292-93. 

were only routine in nature in periods of 
peace. Thus the declaration of the limited 
national emergency and the passage of the 
country's first peacetime draft act in 1940 
placed the QMC in a unique position: it 
suddenly was faced with the task of pro- 
viding shelter, hospitals, and other facil- 
ities, and transportation by motor, rail, 
and water, for a sizable Army not at war. 
The performance of these duties, in addi- 
tion to that of supplying sharply increased 
quantities of food, clothing, and personal 
equipment, required the hurried transfor- 
mation of the Corps from a small organ- 
ization to one of tremendous proportions. 

The Corps retained all of these func- 
tions throughout the emergency period 
when the Army grew from less than 200,- 
000 men to over 1,500,000. During that 

time Quartermaster military personnel in- 
creased to more than 124,000, a large pro- 
portion of whom were required to carry on 
the functions of Army construction and 
transportation. 3 The War Department late 
in 1941 took steps to ease the growing bur- 
den of the QMC and prevailed upon Con- 
gress to pass the law that transferred 
construction, real estate, and utilities func- 
tions to the Corps of Engineers, effective 
16 December 1941. This transfer eventu- 
ally involved about 2,100 officers, al hough 
some were not transferred until early in 
1942. fi 

5 Data obtained from unpublished report of the 
Secretary of War, FY 1942, in Strength Accounting 
Br, AGO. 

6 Data obtained from Statistics and Rpts Sec, Pers 
and Tng Div, OQMG, 9 Dec 48. 

Chart 3 — Growth of the Quartermaster Corps: 1939-1945 



30JUN 31 DEC 30JUN 

LI9391 1940 

I I I I I I I i i 1 o 
31 DEC 30 JUN 3I0EC 

1 1945 J 

Source; (1) Military personnel data obtained from published and unpublished reports of the Secretary of War, 1939-42, and monthly 
reports, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the Army, 1942-45. (2) Civilian personnel data compiled from QMC (later WD) reports, Civilian 
Personnel Statistics (variously titled), 1939-45. 

The QMC was relieved of another 
major function — rail and water transpor- 
tation — in the general reorganization of 
the War Department in March 1942, when 
the Transportation Division was separated 
from the OQMG and established as a divi- 
sion in the SOS, later the Transportation 
Corps. In August, five months later, motor 
transport activities were assigned to the 
Ordnance Department. These reorganiza- 
tions brought about the transfer of about 
3,800 Quartermaster officers and more 
than 66,000 enlisted men to the Transpor- 
tation Corps and the Ordnance Depart- 
ment. 7 The bulk of these transfers occurred 
during the last six months of 1942 and 
slowed down the expansion of the Corps, 
although there was still a net increase of 
about 101,000 in total military personnel 
in the QMC during that period. 

The most rapid growth of the QMC oc- 
curred in the first six months of 1942. This 
was due primarily to the fact that the 
Combined Chiefs of Staff early in 1942 
initiated plans for the invasion of Europe 
either in the fall of that year or in the 
spring of 1943. These plans called for the 
early activation of large numbers of Quar- 
termaster units to handle the vast quanti- 
ties of food, clothing, and equipment that 
were to be stored in the British Isles in 
preparation for the landings on the Con- 
tinent. The average monthly rate of Quar- 
termaster personnel expansion from Jan- 
uary through June was 18,650, as 
compared with 9,665 in the first half of 
1941 and only 3,705 in the last half of that 

7 (1) Ibid. (2) Data obtained from Enlisted Sec, Pers 
and Tng Div, OQMG, 9 Dec 48. 



year. 8 The rate of expansion slackened to 
an average of 15,165 a month late in the 
summer of 1942, after it was decided to 
postpone the invasion of western Europe 
and to confine immediate ground oper- 
ations against Germany to an invasion of 
North Africa. A large requirement for 
Quartermaster troops still existed, how- 
ever, both for the North African campaign 
and for the build-up in the British Isles for 
the eventual invasion of the Continent. 

The monthly expansion rate rose to 
18,175 during the first half of 1943 when 
plans began to take shape for the main 
Allied offensive in Europe. It leveled off, 
however, in the second half of that year 
and never increased substantially there- 
after. The succession of Allied victories had 
turned the tide of war and overseas re- 
quirements had begun to ease. The 
strength of the Corps declined steadily 
after November 1944 and was down to 
about 440,000 in August 1945 when the 
war ended. 9 

Administrative Organization 

The tremendous expansion of the Corps 
between 1939 and 1944 brought corre- 
sponding increases in the scope and com- 
plexity of the problems of the administra- 
tive organization in the OQMG re- 
sponsible for the supervision of personnel 
functions. At the beginning of the period 
of limited national emergency in Septem- 
ber 1939, requirements for personnel were 
sufficiently limited and routine that super- 
vision of both procurement and training of 
personnel was handled by the Administra- 
tive Division. Its Personnel Branch super- 
vised procurement and other activities 
relating to personnel, both military and 
civilian, while its War Plans and Training 
Branch established and directed policies 

and plans pertaining to the organization 
of Quartermaster units, to the mobilization 
and movement of troops, and to all phases 
of training. This same organization had 
been in effect since 1937. 10 

The Personnel Branch was transferred 
from the Administrative Division and 
raised to the status of a division with the 
spurt in the growth of the Corps during 
the latter half of 1940 — the grave period 
following the fall of France. This was the 
first of a series of administrative changes 
affecting personnel activities that were 
made within a period of five months. In 
October, after the passage of the Selective 
Service Act, the personnel training func- 
tions of the War Plans and Training 
Branch were grouped in a separate Train- 
ing Branch and transferred to the Per- 
sonnel Division. Then, late in December 
1940, civilian and military personnel func- 
tions were separated. The Personnel Divi- 
sion was redesignated the Military 
Personnel and Training Division and 
placed under the direction of Brig. Gen. 
Henry D. F. Munnikhuysen. The Civilian 
Personnel Branch of the former Personnel 
Division became the Civilian Personnel 
Division, with Lt. Col. Henry Hockwald 
as chief. 11 

The Military Personnel and Training 
Division directed all activities relating to 
officers and enlisted men, including train- 
ing, throughout 1941 and the early months 
of the war. The initial reorganization of 
the OQMG along functional lines in 

? Computed by author from Annual Report of the 
Secretary of War to the President, 1941 , (Washington, 
1941), and from Monthly Rpts, AG O to WD GS. 

Chart 3 

Strengt h of the Ar m y, 1942-44 . See also[i 

J bee la blc 13 ^ nd fChart 3.| 

,n OQMG OO 4, 7 Jan 37, sub: Office Orgn. 

11 (1) OQMG OO 49, 26 Jul 40, no sub. (2) 
OQMG OO 97, 4 Oct 40, no sub. (3) OQMG OO 
144, 27 Dec 40, sub: Office Orgn. 



March 1942, following the creation of the 
SOS, did not alter the basic structure of 
the division, but the second major reor- 
ganization of the Corps in July 1942 
reunited civilian and military personnel 
functions under the same jurisdiction, this 
time in the Personnel and Training Divi- 
sion. The final major change affecting per- 
sonnel functions took place a month later. 
Personnel and training activities had 
grown to such proportions that they were 
separated and placed in two divisions — the 
Personnel Division and the Military Train- 
ing Division. 11 

Both the Personnel Division and the 
Military Training Division continued in 
existence throughout the remainder of the 
war. General Munnikhuysen, who had 
headed the Military Personnel and Train- 
ing Division, became director of the Per- 
sonnel Division, a post he held until after 
V-J Day. Col. Wilbur R. Mc Reynolds 
was appointed director of the Military 
Training Division and served in that ca- 
pacity until November 1944, when he was 
succeeded by Col. Lloyd R. Wolfe. 13 

Qualifications of Enlisted Men 
in the Q_MC 

Quartermaster troops had to possess the 
same general qualifications and be given 
the same basic military training as other 
soldiers in the Army. In addition, they had 
to have — or be taught — some trade or 
specialty that would make them useful to 
the Corps. They were soldiers first, sup- 
pliers second. The supplies they handled 
were the life blood of the Army, and Quar- 
termaster troops had to learn to protect 
them. The supply lines, because of the 
world-wide scope of the war, were many 
times longer than they had ever been in 
any previous conflict, and were much 

more vulnerable as a result of the develop- 
ment of aerial bombing. Furthermore, 
Quartermaster troops were subject to at- 
tack from fast-moving mechanized forces, 
and endangered by mines and booby 
traps. They had to be mentally stable to 
withstand the shock of battle and capable 
of defending themselves. 

The basic mission of the QMC was to 
procure, store, and distribute food, cloth- 
ing, and individual and organizational 
equipment, as well as general supplies and 
all fuels and lubricants — except aviation 
gasoline — used by all of the armed forces. 
Moreover, the QMC procured and trained 
horses, mules, and dogs for the Army. In 
addition to all of this, it provided special 
services to all troops in the field. For ex- 
ample, it operated field bakeries; provided 
laundry, bathing, and related sanitary fa- 
cilities; collected and disposed of salvage: 
operated repair shops for the mainte- 
nance of shoes, clothing, and equipment 
issued by the Corps; and cared for the 

These functions, highly diversified in 
nature, created the need for a wide variety 
of specialists. Cooks, bakers, meat cutters, 
mess sergeants, oven firemen, laundrymen, 
tailors, shoe repairmen, coopers, packers, 
warehousemen, longshoremen, mechanics 
of various kinds, chemical engineers, re- 
frigeration experts, and many other spe- 
cialists were required to carry on Quar- 
termaster supply services. Plumbers, pipe- 
fitters, electricians, steam engineers, car- 
penters, and painters were needed to 
maintain installations. Truck drivers, elec- 

11 (]) OQMG OO 184, 31 Jul 42, sub: Reassign- 
ment of QMC Functions. (2) OQMG OO 25.1. 31 
Aua; 42, sub: Establishment of Mil Tng Div. (3) For 
administrative developments in reference lo training, 
see below. IChapter VIII 

11 OQMG OO 30-53, 16 Nov 44, sub: Assignment 
of Key Pers. 



trical and motor mechanics, sheet-metal 
workers, and body repairmen were neces- 
sary in the operation and maintenance of 
motor vehicles. 

Enlisted personnel at Quartermaster 
depots included not only truck drivers, 
motor mechanics, and clerks, but also 
supervisors of warehouse and salvage- 
repair activities, and procurement per- 
sonnel trained for contract negotiation, 
renegotiation, and termination. All of 
these men had to be skilled technicians. 
The supervisors, for example, had to be 
capable of instructing, training, and super- 
vising large numbers of personnel, and 
qualified by long training and experience 
to judge commodity values, or skilled in 
reclaiming salvage. Other personnel as- 
signed to depots were dog trainers and 
handlers, photographic laboratory per- 
sonnel, and subsistence and laboratory 
technicians. At remount depots, personnel 
had to be capable of breaking horses and 
mules and training them for field duty. 

The QMC, in expanding its organiza- 
tion to care for the needs of an Army of 
more than 8,000,000 men, had to rely 
heavily upon the occupational experience 
that the inductees assigned to it had ac- 
quired in civilian life. Although most men 
without any particular skills could be 
readily taught to perform most house- 
keeping duties or to work in service units 
that did the manual labor jobs for the 
Army, the other services that comprised 
the bulk of Quartermaster responsibilities 
generally required tradesmen and skilled 

The requirements for specialists were so 
extensive that the Corps had to conduct 
courses in which more than seventy dif- 
ferent trades were taught. Many of the 
men assigned to schools, however, had had 
civilian experience in similar vocations 
and needed only to learn military methods 

and requirements. Otherwise, the Corps 
would have faced a hopeless task in at- 
tempting to train wholly inexperienced 
men in the many required military oc- 
cupational specialties. Certain types of 
Quartermaster technicians, such as the 
highly skilled mechanics and chemical 
engineers needed to operate petroleum 
laboratories, could not be taught in the 
time that was available. For these the 
Corps had to depend entirely upon civil- 
ian-trained men. As General Munnik- 
huysen declared in a speech, not to be 
taken too literally: "The Army can teach 
a man to handle a gun and make a fairly 
decent shot out of him in 13 weeks, but it 
takes from 4 to 6 years to really produce a 
top-notch mechanic." 14 

Most of the major difficulties encoun- 
tered by the QMC in procuring adequate 
military personnel can be traced to certain 
fundamental factors. One of these was that 
all of the arms and services were in compe- 
tition for men, and their requirements for 
many types of specialists overlapped. 
Moreover, civilians who possessed the oc- 
cupational skills the QMC could utilize 
with only a minimum of additional train- 
ing were not inducted into the Army and 
assigned to the Corps in proportion to and 
simultaneously with its need for them. 

Another factor was that a large per- 
centage of the inductees were improperly 
classified at reception centers in regard to 
their occupational experience or poten- 
tialities, and thus the QMC failed to re- 
ceive the various types of specialists in the 
proportions called for in quotas estab- 
lished by the War Department. Further- 
more, the Corps had no priority on in- 
ductees in the higher brackets of intelli- 
gence and aptitude, as rated by Army 
tests, and was allotted an unusually large 

14 Speech, PQMD, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, 
28 Aug 41, sub: Roll Up Your Sleeves. 



proportion of men with inferior intellec- 
tual capacities. 

The extensive competition that existed 
between the QMC and the other branches 
of the Army for the inductees who pos- 
sessed skills is indicated by a classification 
procedure published by the War Depart- 
ment in the fall of 1942. 15 This publica- 
tion listed the 420 occupational skills that 
were considered most useful to the Army, 
and, as a guide to classification officers at 
reception centers, suggested the most ap- 
propriate arm or service to which in- 
ductees with specific civilian occupational 
experience should be assigned. An analy- 
sis of the guide reveals that the QMC 
could utilize 190 of the 420 skills. Of these, 
however, 78 could also be used by all of 
the arms and services, and only 1 1 were 
suggested specifically for the QMC alone. 
These eleven were chain-store managers, 
coopers, laundry-machine operators, long- 
shoremen, office-machine servicemen, oven 
firemen, refrigeration mechanics, sales 
clerks, shoe repairmen, tire rebuilders, and 
traffic-rate clerks. The QMC was in com- 
petition with nearly all of the other 
branches of the Army for experienced 
cooks, general clerks, shipping clerks, stock 
clerks, machinists, stewards, and utility re- 
pairmen. It had to compete with at least 
one and usually more of the arms and 
services for such specialists as accountants, 
buyers, economists, packers, labor fore- 
men, salvage engineers, warehouse fore- 
men, and many others who conformed to 
the types urgently needed by the QMC. 

The Army Classification System 
and the QMC 

From the time the Army began to ex- 
pand in 1939 until the Selective Service 
Act became effective in November 1940, 
all recruits were volunteers who signed up 

for three years in the branch of service 
they selected. Thus the 30,000 enlisted 
men who were in the QMC at the end of 
that period were there by their own choice. 

The Army continued until the end of 
1942 to accept men of draft age as volun- 
teers and permitted them to choose their 
own branch of service, but the great ma- 
jority signed up for the Air Corps, and 
comparatively few for the QMC. Conse- 
quently the personnel composition of the 
Corps began to change rapidly after No- 
vember 1940, when the first selectees were 
inducted. By the end of June 1941 selec- 
tees comprised more than half of the en- 
listed men in the QMC, and by 30 June 
1942 they represented about two thirds, as 
shown in the following table : 16 

30 June 30 June 

Component 1941 1942 

Total Enlisted Men in QMC. 94,928 2 14,413 

Voluntary Enlistees: 

Regular Army 37,423 42,251 

Army of the United States. . . 17,045 

Reserve Corps 34 6,542 

National Guardsmen 8,582 6,867 

Selectees 48,969 141,706 

The Selective Service System brought a 
marked change in the method of personnel 
procurement. It operated on the theory 
that military authorities could best deter- 
mine where a man might serve most effec- 
tively. In contrast to volunteers, selectees 
had little choice as to where they would 
serve. The Army classified them in three 

,s AR 615-26, 15 Sep 42, sub: Index and Specs for 
Civ and Mil Occupational Specialties. 

16 (1) Annual Report of the Secretary of War, 1941 , p. 
95. (2) Data for 1942 were obtained from strength 
records in Strength Accounting Br, AGO. (3) The 
Army of the United States (AUS) was the temporary 
military organization in the war period. The Regular 
Army and other components were incorporated into 
the AUS during the war. 



ways — by occupational skill, by physical 
capacity, and by intellectual capacity — 
and then assigned them to the branch of 
service that it determined could make the 
greatest use of their particular capabili- 

The initial classification took place at 
the reception center and was the basic 
factor in determining where the selectee 
would begin his Army career. Classifica- 
tion, though, was a continuing process 
throughout the military life of the selectee. 
It changed when he had acquired addi- 
tional skills through training, as well as 
when successive classifiers placed different 
evaluations upon his qualifications. 17 

Occupational skill was the primary basis 
for classification during the emergency 
period and the greater part of the war. 
Although inductees were also classified as 
to their physical and intellectual capaci- 
ties, these qualifications were given only 
secondary consideration in assigning men 
to the various arms and services. The rea- 
son was that the Army needed a vast 
number of specialists of all types for the 
huge military organization that was being 
created, and the problem of making a 
trained specialist and soldier out of a civil- 
ian in thirteen weeks made it almost man- 
datory, at least in instances of highly 
skilled trades, that the inductee have some 
civilian background in the specialty in 
which he was to be trained. Moreover, by 
utilizing to a maximum the skills the men 
had acquired in civilian life, the time re- 
quired to train the Army could be short- 
ened immeasurably. 

About the middle of 1944, the classifica- 
tion emphasis shifted from occupational 
skill to physical capacity in an effort to 
provide more men of good physique for the 
Infantry and the other combat arms. By 
then the QMC was near its peak strength. 

Jobs to which inductees were assigned in 

the Army were termed military occupa- 
tional specialties (MOS's). The various 
specialties were arranged in numerical 
order, each having a specification serial 
number (SSN), starting with 001 (aerial 
cameraman). Military specialties that cor- 
responded to civilian occupations were 
designated by numbers below 500, such as 
baker, 017; cook, 060; and laundry fore- 
man, 102. All numbers above 500, with 
two exceptions, represented jobs that were 
distinctly military in character and had no 
civilian counterpart, such as rifleman, 745; 
mess sergeant, 824; and supply clerk, 835. 
One of the exceptions was laborer, 590. 
The other was basic, 521, which signified a 
basic private who had no particular skills 
and might be trained for any Army job. 

An inductee who was classified accord- 
ing to his civilian vocation was, of course, 
inevitably given an SSN below 500. 
Inasmuch as inductees rarely qualified for 
an SSN above 500, the classifiers sought 
men with related trades who could be 
readily trained to fill the needs. For ex- 
ample, a man classified as steward, 124, 
was a logical candidate for training as a 
mess sergeant, 8 24. 18 

The QMC and the other technical 
services naturally had greater require- 
ments for personnel to fill jobs for which 
there were civilian counterparts than the 
arms, which, by reason of their combat 
mission, required a higher ratio of men for 
strictly military pursuits. In the Infantry in 
1943, for example, 732 out of each 1,000 
men filled distinctly military jobs, in con- 
trast to 145 out of each 1,000 men in the 
QMC, and 63 in the Transportation 
Corps. At the same time, however, only 
466 out of each 1,000 men in the QMC 
had civilian-type jobs, as compared with 

17 AR 615-25, 3 Sep 40, sub: EM— Classification. 
"AGO Memo W615-12-43, 28 Jan 43, sub: 
Reqmt and Repl Rates, Mil Specialists (1943 TrB). 



788 in the Transportation Corps, 725 in 
the Corps of Engineers, 641 in the Ord- 
nance Department, and 579 in the Signal 
Corps. This disparity was due to the fact 
that the QMC had far greater need for 
laborers than any other service — 268 out 
of each 1,000 men — as contrasted with 
182 for Chemical Warfare Service, which 
ranked second in these requirements, and 
none for the Signal Corps and the Medical 
Department. 19 

From the beginning of selective service 
until about the middle of 1943, The Adju- 
tant General's Office (AGO) distributed 
trainees, as directed by the War Depart- 
ment General Staff, from reception centers 
to replacement training centers and di- 
rectly to units. From then until the end of 
the war, the AGO allotted trainees, as in- 
structed by the War Department General 
Staff and Headquarters, Army Service 
Forces (which acquired responsibility for 
the administration of Army-wide functions 
pertaining to personnel in the March 1942 
reorganization of the War Department), 
to the three major commands — Army 
Ground Forces, Army Air Forces, and 
Army Service Forces. Each command 
became responsible for the redistribution 
of these allotments to its replacement 
training centers and units. The distribu- 
tion of personnel from reception centers 
was made primarily in accordance with 
MOS classification until May 1944, when 
physical qualifications rather than occupa- 
tional specialties became the basis for as- 
signment from these centers. 20 

The AGO, as the operating agency for 
assigning personnel to training centers, 
schools, and units, published schedules of 
the personnel requirements of the various 
arms and services and transmitted them to 
the service commands. Each service com- 
mand then converted these requirements 
into requisitions upon the reception cen- 

ters within its jurisdiction. These schedules 
or quotas were established in such a way 
that each training center and unit received 
personnel from several service commands 
in an effort to insure an equitable distribu- 
tion of the skills and abilities of the 
trainees. The requistions informed the re- 
ception centers of the number, color 
(white or Negro), and military require- 
ments of the men needed, the organization 
to which they were to go, and the time 
they were to be sent. 

Trainees for units were requistioned on 
the basis of Table of Organization (T/O) 
requirements. As a guide to the composi- 
tion of shipments to replacement training 
centers, the War Department published re- 
quirement and replacement rate tables, 
which specified the number and types of 
specialists needed per thousand men for 
each arm and service. These tables were 
formulated from an analysis and consoli- 
dation of Tables of Organization, indicat- 
ing the types of jobs required for each mil- 
itary unit, and from the Troop Basis, show- 
ing the proposed total number of each type 
of unit. The requirement and replacement 
rate tables were revised periodically as the 
Army grew and conditions and require- 
ments changed. Actually, because of the 
constantly changing requirements, recur- 
rent personnel shortages, competition 
among the major commands for personnel 
with the same occupational specialties, and 
other factors, the number and types of 
specialists sent to the replacement training 
centers rarely coincided with the require- 
ment and replacement rate tables. 

Requirements during the emergency 

19 (1) Ibid. (2) For a general discussion of manpower 
in relation to the Army, see Jonathan Grossman, In- 
dustrial Manpower Policies and Problems of the War 
Department, a volume in preparation for the series 

20 WD Memo W40-44, 18 May 44, sub: Physical 
Profile Plan. 



period and the early part of the war were 
based on normal attrition — losses incurred 
from such causes as death, accident, sick- 
ness, transfer, and discharge — in each arm 
and service. Later on, when casualty data 
for each type of occupational specialty be- 
came available from theaters of operations 
in sufficient quantity for reasonably accu- 
rate calculations, battle casualties plus 
normal attrition became the basis for com- 
puting requirements and quotas. 

The Quartermaster requirement and 
replacement rate table of October 1940 
listed 45 different types of occupational 
specialists, but the number of each type 
needed per thousand men varied from 1 
warehouseman and 2 mail clerks, to 219 
truck drivers and 22 automobile mechan- 
ics. In addition to truck drivers and auto- 
mobile mechanics, the most-needed types 
per thousand men at that time were re- 
ceiving and shipping clerks, 37 ; bakers, 35 ; 
general clerks, 34; cooks, 25; and motor- 
cycle mechanics, 2 2. 21 

Quartermaster requirements for special- 
ists shifted sharply after construction and 
transportation functions were transferred 
from the QMC. For example, the Corps 
no longer needed such a large proportion 
of automobile and motorcycle mechanics. 
At the same time, the number of types of 
specialists required by the QMC con- 
tinued to grow as new needs developed. By 
April 1942 the requirement and replace- 
ment rate table listed more than 100 dif- 
ferent types. 22 

Classification by Occupational Skill 

While the QMC computed its require- 
ments for specialists and notified the AGO 
of the specific types it wanted, it had little 
control over the kinds of men it actually 
received from the reception centers. The 

requirements were taken into considera- 
tion, of course, but the quotas established 
by the AGO had to be based on the types 
of specialists being inducted and the needs 
of the AGF and the AAF as determined by 
the G-3 Division, War Department Gen- 
eral Staff. The fact was that the occurrence 
of skills among the inductees simply did 
not conform to Army requirements for spe- 
cialists, which meant, for one thing, that 
men possessing scarce skills had to be ap- 
portioned among the ASF, the AGF, and 
the AAF according to the most urgent 

There were other reasons, too, why the 
personnel requirements of the QMC and 
the other branches of the Army could not 
be met in the assignments from reception 
centers. Many of the inductees possessed 
common skills that could be used by the 
Army, but the supply of these men usually 
exceeded the demand, and the surplus had 
to be assigned to training for other jobs. 
Included in this category were carpenters, 
painters, and clerks. On the other hand, 
some of the men, such as farmers, lawyers, 
and salesmen, had occupational experi- 
ence for which the Army had little or no 
use. Then, too, many men, especially those 
in the younger age groups, had no special- 
ized training at all, and unless their apti- 
tude tests indicated special potential tal- 
ents they were classified as basics. 

Furthermore, all inductees were poten- 
tial candidates for combat service. Basics, 
of course, were more likely to be given 
such assignments than were men with oc- 
cupational specialties. At the same time, 
however, men with skills needed by the 

21 MR 1-8, 18 Sep 40, sub: Approximate Reqmt 
and Repl Rates of Occupational Specialists for WD 
PMP, 1940, p. 11. 

22 Incl to Ltr, AGO to CG SOS, 18 Apr 42, sub: 
Experience Tables for Calculation of Tng Ratios for 
the QMC, AG 353 (11-13-41) EC-C-M. 



technical services often were designated 
for combat training when requirements of 
the arms were particularly urgent or seri- 
ous shortages existed. Officers in charge of 
classification at reception centers could 
change the recommendations of classifiers 
when it was necessary to meet current 
shortages. 23 

The crux of the situation was that recep- 
tion centers had to meet the quotas for the 
AGF, the AAF, and the ASF with what- 
ever types of men they had on hand at the 
time assignments were made, regardless of 
whether their qualifications conformed to 
the specifications. The steady flow of in- 
ductees and the shortage of housing facili- 
ties prevented the reception centers from 
retaining men in an attempt to adjust sup- 
ply to requirements. Consequently, when 
the supply of specialists did not meet MOS 
requirements, the only alternative was to 
substitute other personnel. Army regula- 
tions specified that the men who were sub- 
stituted should have the required "poten- 
tial aptitude" to meet the needs, but such 
men were not necessarily available 
either. 24 

The QMC could never be sure chat the 
qualifications of the men received from re- 
ception centers would even approach con- 
formity to the ratios established in its re- 
quirement and replacement rate table. 
The Quartermaster Replacement Train- 
ing Centers (QMRTC's) at Camp Lee 
and Fort Francis E. Warren reported in 
1941 that they received too many men in 
certain categories and too few in others, 
while as many as half of the men had been 
classified as basic, indicating that they had 
no classifiable skills. 

During the second training cycle at 
Camp Lee, 14 July-11 October 1941, a 
comparison of the number of trainees re- 
ceived with the number set up in the War 

Department quota in the clerical, admin- 
istrative, and supply group revealed a 25- 
percent overload in this group that had to 
be trained under their second occupa- 
tional specialty number or some other SSN 
in which a full quota had not been re- 
ceived, such as bakers, automobile me- 
chanics, or truck drivers. The number of 
butchers, carpenters, plumbers, and 
painters received ran far in excess of 
quotas, while only 7 percent of the mess 
sergeants, 20 percent of the bakers, 45 per- 
cent of the truck drivers, and 87 percent of 
the cooks called for in the quotas had been 
assigned to Camp Lee. These conditions 
forced the reclassification of many men 
from skilled specialists in certain fields to 
semiskilled specialists in others. 25 

The adjutant at the Quartermaster Re- 
placement Training Center at Fort Warren 
stated that 400 out of 1,400 selectees re- 
ceived there in October 1941 were im- 
properly classified, and that the situation 
had been growing progressively worse. "In 
our first group we found 85% correctly 
classified. That was pretty high. The 
second group ran about 75% correctly 
classified. Now it is getting worse. It is 
going up to 30 and 40% erroneously 
classified." 26 

Brig. Gen. John A. Warden, command- 
ing general at the Fort Warren QMRTC, 
pointed out that the improper classifica- 
tion of selectees created training problems. 
He criticized the War Department for its 

23 AR 615-25, Sec. Ill, par. 10, 3 Sep 40, sub: 
EM — Classification. 

21 Ltr, AGO to CG SOS, el al., 3 Aug 42, sub: 
Reqmt and Repl Rates for Occupational Specialists, 
AG 201.5 (9-3-42) UP-PS-M. 

25 Ltr, Brig Gen Charles D. Hartman, CG Camp 
Lee QMRTC, to TQMG, 24 Sep 41, sub: Occupa- 
tional Specialists for QMRTCs, 353 (Camp Lee). 

26 Min of Conf, Ft. Warren QMRTC, 6 Nov 41, 



classification procedure at reception 

One . . . question which I think is one 
that needs quite a bit of study is the classifica- 
tion in reception centers. It seems to me that 
the War Department has gotten the cart be- 
fore the horse. It is quite true that men are 
rushed through but I think that is where the 
classification should be made. The minute 
they get here we have to start reclassifying 
them. We get a great many improperly clas- 
sified and too many classified as basic who, 
when you get down to their second or third 
qualification, we can get a classification that 
would fit into our training. We get other men 
who are classified [as specialists] which we do 
not train here — horse trainers, radio techni- 
cians, embalmers, etc. We have no facilities 
for training them. 27 

The policy of assigning men from recep- 
tion centers who did not fulfill require- 
ments not only increased the training 
problem, but was also wasteful of skills 
and tended to lower morale. For example, 
if a QMRTC had need on a certain day 
for 100 shoe repairmen, but the reception 
center on that day had no men with such 
qualifications on hand, the latter might 
substitute 100 basics. This meant that 100 
inexperienced men had to be trained for 
a trade for which they might not have any 
particular talent or any desire to learn. 
Yet a few days later the reception center 
might induct 100 shoe repairmen for 
which no requirement then existed. These 
men, excellently qualified as shoe repair- 
men, would thus be assigned to service 
units or to training for other jobs for which 
they were not especially qualified. The re- 
sult could be that 200 men would be 
square pegs in round holes, and most of 
them probably discontented at their lot. 
Situations similar to this actually oc- 
curred. 28 

Contributing to the difficulties encoun- 
tered by the QMC in obtaining the types 

of men it needed was an apparent miscon- 
ception on the part of interviewers at re- 
ception centers as to Quartermaster re- 
quirements. The fact that the QMRTC at 
Camp Lee in 1941 was receiving a large 
surplus of men with clerical aptitudes, 
while at the same time experiencing a 
shortage of men with mechanical back- 
ground, led the classification officer at that 
center to declare: "Reception centers have 
the idea that the Quartermaster Corps 
needs more clerks than any other kind of 
specialist." He pointed out that require- 
ments at the Camp Lee QMRTC at that 
time called for the training of 25 percent 
of the men as mechanics, another 25 per- 
cent of the men as truck drivers, and only 
10 percent as clerks. 29 

Brig. Gen. Charles D. Hartman, the 
commanding general of the Camp Lee 
QMRTC, blamed the surplus of clerical 
workers and the shortage of men with me- 
chanical background upon the geographi- 
cal locations of the reception centers from 
which the selectees were assigned. 30 Camp 
Lee obtained the bulk of its personnel from 
reception centers along the eastern sea- 
board and adjoining areas, while the re- 
ception centers farther west normally sup- 
plied the men for the other QMRTC at 
Fort Warren. The contention of the Camp 
Lee QMRTC commander was that the in- 
ability of Camp Lee to draw men from the 
industrial regions of the Middle West re- 
s' Ibid. 

28 Memo, Lt Col Wilbur R. McReynolds, OQMG, 
for ACofS G-3, 20 Oct 41, sub: Selection and Assign- 
ment of Selectees to RTCs, 327.02. 

29 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, OQMG, for ASF, Tng of 
Repls, Fillers, and Cadres (Pts. I, II, and III, and 
Apps., n. d.), Pt. I, App. 4, pp. 5-6. (Hereafter cited 
as Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 

30 Ltr, Gen Hartman, CG QMRC, Camp Lee, to 
TQMG, 24 Sep 41, sub: Occupational Specialist Rate 
for QMRCs, 353 (Camp Lee). 



suited in his center getting a dispropor- 
tionately small number of civilian-trained 
mechanics, while the preponderance of 
selectees from cities along the east coast 
gave Camp Lee a high proportion of men 
with "white collar" backgrounds. He rec- 
ommended that the location of reception 
centers sending personnel to Camp Lee be 
shifted to industrial centers of the automo- 
tive industry, and that the QMC be given 
high priority in the assignment of mechan- 
ics and other specialists in the motors field. 

General Hartman's recommendations 
were forwarded to the War Department 
General Staff, which rejected them. The 
General Staff pointed out that reception 
centers had to fill allotments for all arms 
and services, and declared that the skills 
required by the QMC would be found in 
all geographic areas. It stated further that 
nearly 100 percent more clerical workers 
were being inducted than were needed by 
the Army, and the excess had to be trained 
in other fields. The request that the Corps 
be given high priority on men in the 
motors group was turned down "because of 
the tremendous shortage existing for this 
specialty in all Arms and Services." 
Although the General Staff admitted that 
the QMC was "undoubtedly losing the 
proper service of many men with potential 
skills," it declared that the discrepancy 
was not the fault of the initial classification 
at reception centers "but rather the lack of 
a properly co-ordinated assignment pro- 
cedure." It also felt that the proper place 
for picking up men with many of these po- 
tential skills was in the classification and 
assignment sections of the replacement 
training centers. 31 

The Fort Warren QMRTC also was ex- 
periencing a severe shortage of mechanics 
in 1941, an indication that the situation 
was general rather than geographical. For 

example, it received only 100 automobile 
mechanics against a requirement of 1,872, 
and 5 motorcycle mechanics as compared 
with the required 193. Similar shortages of 
specialists existed throughout the mechan- 
ical and automotive fields. 32 About 65 per- 
cent of all selectees received at Fort War- 
ren were being trained as motor operators 
or mechanics. Furthermore, officers at 
Fort Warren had the same complaint as 
those at Camp Lee that they were receiv- 
ing "far too many clerks." 33 

Inasmuch as there was a large general 
surplus of clerical workers, reception cen- 
ters apparently were not at fault in sending 
more of them to the QMC than were 
needed. Neither could they be blamed for 
the shortage of men with mechanical back- 
ground. The difficulty was that the Army's 
need for mechanics was much greater than 
the supply of civilian-trained mechanics 
being inducted. General Somervell, com- 
manding general of the SOS, pointed out 
in 1942 that in the field of automobile 
mechanics alone there was a shortage of 
34,790 in each 1,000,000 men being taken 
into the Army. 31 Out of 47,148 white men 
received at the Camp Lee QMRTC be- 
tween 1 September 1941 and 31 August 
1942, only 1,412, or 3 percent, had a back- 
ground of mechanical work, yet during 
that period the center was required to 
train 35 percent of all incoming selectees 
for mechanical and allied occupations. 
The problem was complicated further by 
the fact that more than one third of the 

31 2d Ind, AGO to TQMG, 10 Dec 41, on Memo, 
ACofS G-l, for TQMG, 12 Nov 41, sub: Occupation- 
al Specialist Rate for QMRCs, 353 (Camp Lee). 

12 Capt George A. Berger, Jr., to Maj Albert N. 
Stubblebinejr., Hq Ft. Warren QMRTC, 5 Nov 41, 
no sub. 

Min of Conf, Ft. Warren QMRTC, 6 Nov 41, 


34 Address, Gen Somervell, American Institute of 
Education, Washington, D. C, 28 Aug 42. 



men being received at the QMRTC at 
that time were classified as basics, indicat- 
ing that they had no special training as 
mechanics. 35 During the first six months of 
1942, approximately 82 percent of the 
trainees enrolled in the motor mechanics 
courses at the Camp Lee QMRTC were 
men who had no previous experience in 
mechanical work. 36 

The QMC could not hope, of course, to 
make skilled mechanics in thirteen weeks 
out of men who had had no civilian ex- 
perience in that field of work. It had to do 
the next best thing: teach the trainees the 
fundamentals so that they could be as- 
signed as helpers and gradually become 
sufficiently skilled to perform their duties 
adequately. 37 

Despite the scarcity of men with me- 
chanical background, the QMC during 
the emergency period and the early part of 
the war was able to obtain a fair percent- 
age of civilian-trained skilled mechanics, 
who, when given additional technical 
training, could perform efficiently in units. 
The supply of civilian-trained mechanics 
dwindled, however, as the war progressed 
and was virtually nonexistent as early as 
April 1943. 38 By then, though, transporta- 
tion functions had been transferred from 
the QMC and there no longer was a de- 
mand for the Corps to supply automobile 
mechanics except for the maintenance of 
its own vehicles. 

The principal remaining requirements 
for mechanics within the QMC were for 
maintenance and repair of laundry and 
refrigeration equipment and shoe-repair 
stitching machines. Laundry mechanics, 
for example, were needed for servicing 
mobile laundry equipment. The QMC 
had 240 mobile laundry units in Septem- 
ber 1942, and plans called for adding them 
at the rate of 191 per month until the end 

of 1943. Inasmuch as mobile laundries 
were new to the Army, no MOS had been 
set up for men trained as laundry mechan- 
ics. They were classified merely as utility 
repairmen, SSN 121, thereby creating 
considerable confusion, and many of the 
men were assigned in fields other than 
laundry, thus tending to increase the 
shortage. Candidates for training as laun- 
dry mechanics were required to have a 
background of laundry repair experience, 
pass an aptitude test, possess at least a 
fifth-grade education, and show an interest 
in the work. The Camp Lee QMRTC re- 
ported that between 1 September 1941 
and 31 August 1943 it received only 938 
men with any experience in the mainte- 
nance of laundry equipment, while it was 
called upon to supply many times that 
number of laundry specialists. 39 Similarly, 
mechanics were in demand for maintain- 
ing and repairing all mobile and fixed re- 
frigeration units except those at permanent 
installations, which were under the juris- 
diction of the Corps of Engineers, and for 
servicing the heavy-duty stitching ma- 
chines used by mobile shoe repair units. 

In addition to mechanics and automo- 
tive specialists, other types of Quartermas- 
ter specialists whose skills were high on the 
list of classifications in which there were 

" 1st Ind, Lt Col James L. Whelchel, Hq QMRTC, 
Camp Lee, to TQMG, 9 Jan 43, on Ltr, Lt Col Ross 
W. Mayer, OQMG, to CG QMRTC, Camp Lee, 
1 Jan 43, sub: Qualifications of Students, 000.8. 

1(i Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. I. App. 4, p. 6. 

17 Min of Conf, Ft. Warren QMRTC, 6 Nov 41, 

as Memo, Col Mayer, Deputy Dir of Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG, for ASF, 2 Apr 43, sub: Renewal of Con- 
tract, 000. 8 (Mid- West Motive Trades Institute.) 

:1S Rpt, Mil Tng Div, OQMG, for ASF, Schooling 
of Enlisted Pers (Pts. I and II and Apps., n. d.), Pt. I. 
Midwest Motive Trades Institute Sec, pp. 1-4. (Here- 
after cited as Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Enlisted 



serious shortages during the emergency 
period and the early part of the war in- 
cluded bakers, cooks, crane operators, 
labor foremen, longshoremen, mess ser- 
geants, receiving and shipping clerks, shoe 
repairmen, tool makers, utility repairmen, 
and warehousemen. 40 Many such short- 
ages were overcome through the intensive 
training program carried on as the war 
progressed. The supply of cooks, for ex- 
ample, caught up with requirements as 
early as October 1942, when the number 
of trainees was reduced by 50 percent. 41 
By the middle of 1943 the supply of shoe 
repairmen far exceeded the requirements, 
and the surplus was used to fill requisitions 
for other specialists. 42 

On the other hand, new shortages de- 
veloped. One of the most important was 
that of petroleum technicians needed for 
Quartermaster petroleum laboratories. 
These laboratories were specialized troop 
units organized in the latter part of 1943 
and in 1944 to test and analyze gasoline, 
fuel oil, and lubricants in theaters of oper- 
ations. Assignment to these units required 
qualifications of experience in the petro- 
leum industry and a knowledge of chem- 
istry. Although fewer than 300 enlisted 
men were needed, the background require- 
ments were such that even that number 
could not be found within the QMC and a 
large percentage of the personnel needed 
had to t>e transferred from other branches 
of the Army. Furthermore, those who 
possessed the necessary background had to 
be given additional training before they 
could be assigned to the laboratory units. 43 

The reason for the shortage of petro- 
leum technicians and mechanics at the 
QMRTC's was simply that induction of 
men with these skills did not occur in pro- 
portion to military requirements. There 
were other valid reasons why men were 

shipped to QMRTC's in quantities highly 
disproportionate to*needs. It is apparent, 
however, that the procedure at reception 
centers was at fault in some measure, and 
that a more careful classification at the 
centers could have produced a more ade- 
quate distribution of skills. For example, 
one of the reasons for the improper distri- 
bution was the short time allotted at the 
reception centers for ascertaining the 
qualifications of the men. Selectees were 
kept at the centers an average of only 
seventy-two hours because of the rapid 
rate of induction and the limited housing 
facilities, and only a small portion of each 
man's processing time — usually from 
fifteen to eighteen minutes — was allotted 
to an interview. 44 The information that 
could be obtained from the men in this 
short time concerning their work histories 
often was insufficient to establish an ac- 
curate basis for assignment. Consequently 
many of the men were assigned to types of 
work for which they were not suited, in- 
stead of to the jobs for which they might 
have been better qualified. 

The War Department realized that the 

40 (1) Capt Berger to Maj Stubblebine, Ft. Warren 
QMRTC, 5 Nov 41, no sub, 353 (Camp Lee). (2) Ltr, 
AGO to TQMG, 6 Jan 42, sub; Experience Tables for 
Calculation of Tng Ratios of the QMC, AG 353 
(1 1-13-42) EC C-M. (3) Incl, Ltr, AGO to CG SOS, 
18 Apr 42, same sub, AG 353 (1 1-13-41) EV-C-M. 

41 Ltr, Col McReynolds, Dir of Mil Tng Div, to 
CGs QMRTCs, 13 Oct 42, sub: Tng of Cooks. 

42 2d Ind, AGO to TQMG, 25 Jun 43, on Ltr, Lt 
Col Charles S. Gersoni, Ft. Warren QMRTC, to 
TQMG, 8 Jun 43, sub: Clarification of Shipment of 
EM, 220.63 (Ft. Warren). 

" (1) Ltr, TQMG to AGO, 1 1 Aug 43, sub: En- 
listed Pers for QMC Petri Products Laboratory Units. 
(2) Memo, Col Wilbur R. McReynolds, Dir of Mil 
Tng Div, for CG ASF, 14 Aug 43, sub: Use of Civ 
Institute for Tng of Petri Technicians. (3) Ltr, Brig 
Gen Wilbur R. McReynolds, Dir of Mil Tng Div, to 
CG ASF, 12 Feb 44, sub: Continuation of Tng of Petri 

44 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. I, App. 4, p. 5. 



reception center system of distributing per- 
sonnel was not infallible, and that the ini- 
tial classification, because of the speed 
necessary in processing inductees, amount- 
ed to only a coarse screening of the skills 
and potentialities of the men. Therefore it 
had made provision to extend the Army 
classification system beyond the reception 
centers. Replacement training centers 
were directed "to assign each enlisted man 
to that type of training which he can 
readily absorb and thereby be of greatest 
value to the service." 45 Thus the first func- 
tion of the QMRTC's was to reclassify per- 
sonnel received from reception centers. 
The QMRTC's then had an opportunity 
to correct mistakes in the initial classifica- 
tion at reception centers and to make any 
additions necessary to the soldier's classi- 
fication card. This opportunity was lost 
when men were assigned directly to units 
from reception centers, as was done fre- 
quently in 1942. 46 

Classification procedure at the 
QMRTC's was rather rudimentary in the 
first few months of their operation. Se- 
lectees were merely allocated to either 
supply training or motor training, and the 
assignment to specialist training within 
these broad fields was left largely to the 
commanders of the training regiments. 
Later on, after the centers had become 
better organized, the work was centralized 
with the establishment at each of the two 
QMRTC's of a Classification and Assign- 
ment Section, which became responsible 
for the co-ordination of all reclassification. 

Interviewing became a regular part of 
the process of receiving selectees. Classifi- 
cation cards that had been filled out at the 
reception centers were carefully examined. 
Formal written examinations were em- 
ployed to test the knowledge of trainees on 
theoretical subjects, and performance tests 

were given to determine the proficiency of 
men in their civilian trades. Much need- 
less repetition of training could be avoided 
if a man was designated to pursue in the 
Army the same trade he had followed in 
civilian life. A cobbler, for instance, would 
not require as much training as a salesman 
if both were assigned to repair shoes. The 
cobbler could forego much of the technical 
training and thus become available for 
duty earlier than if he had to take the full 
training course. This procedure saved 
much time and effort. 47 

Although QMRTC interviewers sought 
to conserve training time through the uti- 
lization of civilian skills wherever possible, 
they also had to take into account the ca- 
pacities and requirements of the various 
technical schools. The fact that the skills of 
the men varied so greatly from specialist 
requirements made it highly important to 
discover and take advantage of potential 
aptitudes for MOS's in which shortages 
existed. Thus while the civilian experience 
of the man, his occupational preference, 
and his educational background were 
usually primary considerations, aptitude 
as demonstrated by aptitude tests was 
often a vital criterion for the interviewer in 
making his recommendations for assign- 

Even after a man had been assigned to 
a QMRTC training unit he could be re- 
classified if found unfit for the type of 
training he was undergoing, or if it was de- 

AR 6 1 5-28, Sec. I, 28 May 42, sub: Classifica- 
tion, Reclassification, Assignment, and Reassignment. 

* 6 (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. I, p. 49. (2) AGO Memo W6 15-22-42, 5 
Sep 42, sub: Policy of Filling Requisitions for Filler 
and Loss Repls. 

For a detailed account of classification procedure 
at the Camp Lee QMRTC, see Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and Cadres, Pt. I, 
App. 4. 



termined that he might be employed to 
better advantage in another kind of work. 
This reclassification could be requested by 
the man himself, his company commander, 
his technical instructor, or by the Classifi- 
cation and Assignment Section. A regi- 
mental reclassification officer was placed 
in control of classification and assignment 
within each regiment in an effort to expe- 
dite the process of reassigning personnel 
when necessary. 

Classification of selectees according to 
their civilian skills did not necessarily 
mean that they would become technicians 
in QMC units. The men possessing skills 
were usually those with greater general 
ability who normally were earmarked to 
fill other highly essential needs. One of the 
most pressing needs was for commissioned 
officers. More than 5 percent of all Quar- 
termaster personnel had to be trained as 
officers. Commanding officers of QMC 
units were reluctant to release valuable 
men for training as officers, and conse- 
quently the burden of supplying officer 
material fell upon the QMRTC's. During 
the summer of 1942 the demand was so 
great that virtually every man at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC who could qualify 
was sent to the Quartermaster Officer 
Candidate School. 48 

The great need for instructors in tech- 
nical training was another drain on skilled 
personnel. Most of these instructors were 
enlisted men. They had been trained spe- 
cialists in civilian life and possessed the 
qualifications that could be utilized in 
training others, in view of the scarcity of 
officer and civilian instructors. Similarly, 
men who demonstrated exceptional apti- 
tude in motor mechanics were often as- 
signed to Quartermaster regional motor 
schools for advanced training, while per- 
sonnel with outstanding leadership quali- 

ties were designated for training as 
noncommissioned officers. 

An additional drain on high-grade per- 
sonnel came with the establishment near 
the end of 1942 of the Army Specialized 
Training Program, under which selected 
enlisted men with outstanding qualifica- 
tions for commissions were permitted to 
continue their studies, under military 
discipline, in civilian institutions of higher 
learning. Engineering courses, for example, 
usually absorbed men with a combination 
of mechanical aptitude and high general 

This competition within the QMC for 
men of high quality, at a time when the 
Army was expanding rapidly and a gen- 
eral shortage of personnel existed, tended 
to make men of lower caliber available for 
the technical schools. Considerable criti- 
cism was directed at the QMRTC's by 
these schools concerning the background 
of students selected for their courses. The 
complaint was made that courses were 
being wasted on personnel "which never 
possessed the basic qualifications upon 
which to start." 49 One of the schools, the 
Midwest Motive Trades Institute, which 
was training laundry machinists and me- 
chanical technicians, reported that the 
majority of the trainees had little mechan- 
ical experience and only a few had had 
any contact with laundry equipment. Fur- 
thermore, it declared that nearly half of 
the men were past thirty years of age, 
about 20 percent were past thirty-eight, 
and 25 percent could not assimilate the 
training and should never have been as- 
signed to'the school. 50 

18 Ibid., p. 6. 

l » Rpt, Lt Col Gustave H. Vogel, to TQMG, 9 Mar 
42, sub: Rpt of Insp of QM Activities, 333.1. 

bn Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Enlisted Pers, Pt. 
1, Midwest Motive Trades Institute Sec, p. 3. 



This criticism led to an analysis by the 
Camp Lee QMRTC early in 1943 of the 
availability and qualifications of students 
for the technical schools. The conclusion 
reached was that the men chosen were as 
well qualified as possible; that they were 
a "select group" as compared to the aver- 
age trainee; and that, because of the ex- 
tensive requirements for cadres during 
1943, "the quality of men going to these 
schools will become worse instead of 
better." 51 

Classification by Physical Capacity 

Two important developments late in 
1943 and early in 1944 altered classifica- 
tion objectives and methods. One was the 
decline in the caliber of men received from 
reception centers. 52 Most of the younger, 
better-qualified men were already in the 
armed forces, with the result that draft 
boards had to lower induction standards 
and accept older men in the face of the 
growing manpower shortage. The other 
development was a change in the mission 
of the QMRTC's. Requirements for fillers 
and cadres — the first consideration dur- 
ing the period of rapid expansion when so 
many new units were being activated — 
became of secondary importance to the 
requirements for individual replacements 
overseas. The mobilization of the QMC 
was almost complete, and fewer men were 
passing through the QMRTC's. The 
Camp Lee QMRTC could train sufficient 
replacements alone, and the QMRTC at 
Fort Warren was therefore discontinued. 53 

The War Department specified that 
men going overseas as individual replace- 
ments had to meet rigid physical stand- 
ards. Consequently the Camp Lee 
QMRTC, which formerly had been con- 
cerned primarily with the occupational 

skills of its trainees, found it necessary to 
shift the emphasis to their physical capac- 
ities. Reversing its former procedure, the 
QMRTC sought to bring to light any 
physical defects in the men before they 
began their training rather than after they 
had completed it and were ready for ship- 
ment overseas. Inasmuch as many defects 
could be corrected during training, this 
change facilitated the preparation of in- 
dividual replacements. 

The previous lack of attention by the 
QMRTC's to the physical soundness of 
their trainees can be traced in part to the 
weakness in the Army system of physical 
classification. This classification had been 
extremely broad and proved far from ade- 
quate when it came to screening the men 
for those who could meet the physical re- 
quirements for overseas service. From the 
beginning of the emergency period until 
the middle of 1943, men were simply 
classified either as fit for general service or 
capable only of limited service, with no 
distinction within these categories as to 
varying degrees of physical capacity. Men 
classified for limited service were restricted 
to noncombatant duties, and were to be 
utilized only in the zone of interior. All 
others were considered capable of per- 
forming any kind of military service and 
were placed in the general-service cate- 
gory. The Army specified that men in this 

51 1st Ind, Col Whelchel, Camp Lee QMRTC, to 
TQMG, 9 Jan 43, on Ltr, Col Mayer, Deputy Dir of 
Mil Tng Dlv, to CG Camp Lee QMRTC, 1 Jan 43, 
sub: Qualifications of Students, 000.8. 

52 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Ft. I, App. 4, p. 20. 

53 The Fort Francis E. Warren QMRTC was in- 
activated in October 1943, its personnel being as- 
signed to the Quartermaster Unit Training Center 
transferred the previous month from Vancouver Bar- 
racks to Fort Warren. The Unit Training Center con- 
tinued there until April 1944, when it was redesig- 
nated an ASF Training Center. 



group were to be conserved for the theaters 
of operations. 

Limited- Service Personnel 

During the first eighteen months the Se- 
lective Service System was in operation, 
the manpower supply was considered 
plentiful and the great majority of selectees 
who had physical defects were rejected. 
Early in 1943, when the Army began to 
induct limited-service men in sizable num- 
bers, it specified that they should be used 
to full advantage "without retarding the 
training of combat troops." 54 Inasmuch as 
Quartermaster troops were classed as non- 
combatant, the QMC apparently made 
little distinction at first among limited- 
service men for many positions in the zone 
of interior and, for a four-month period, 
20 June-4 November 1942, it could even 
send them overseas for duty in port bat- 
talions, base hospitals, and communication 
zone units. After that brief period, how- 
ever, shipment of limited-service men 
overseas for any type of duty was, in prin- 
ciple, prohibited.* 5 

In the fall of 1942 the War Department 
established the policy that limited-service 
men "will be assigned initially to non- 
combatant organizations," but specified 
that it was the duty of all unit command- 
ers to attempt to fit them through training 
and remedial measures for general service. 

The early correction of dental defects and 
fitting of glasses will be a matter of routine in 
all organizations. Commanders will utilize to 
the fullest extent those who have noncorrect- 
ible defects in positions which are predomi- 
nately noncombatant; an individual with 
defective hearing may function well as a 
cook, and one unable to march because of 
flat feet may be fully qualified as a 
chauffeur. 5 " 

All of the theaters were extremely short 

of Quartermaster and other service per- 
sonnel because the 1942 Troop Basis had 
underestimated overseas personnel re- 
quirements for them, and many combat 
troops were required to perform supply 
duties. 57 In its efforts to make more men 
available for overseas duty, the QMC as- 
signed many limited-service men to units 
being trained during the first half of 1943 
for service in the theaters. While it was 
common for a unit as large as a regiment 
to include between 100 and 200 such men, 
the roster of the 475th Quartermaster 
Truck Regiment at Camp Blanding, Fla., 
listed 1,209 limited-service personnel. Of 
this number, 453 men, classified as chauf- 
feurs, were found to be unfit and had to be 
transferred from the unit. 5 * The QMC had 
to gamble on whether the limited-service 
personnel assigned to units could overcome 
their defects and be reclassified as general 
service so that they could accompany their 
organizations abroad. Those who failed to 
qualify had to be replaced, and this de- 
layed shipping dates of the affected units. 

Many general-service men were being 
utilized as operating personnel in the zone 
of interior despite the severe shortage of 
men physically qualified to serve overseas. 
As an illustration, QMC operating person- 
nel on 30 June 1943 comprised 7,055 gen- 
eral-service men in contrast to only 1,416 

14 AR 615-28, Sec. I, par. 2a, 28 May 42, sub: 
EM — Classification and Assignment. Conscientious 
objectors were classified for limited service. 

r " (1) WD Cir 198, Sec. Ill, 20 Jun 42, sub: Ship- 
ment of EM Overseas. (2) WD Cir 363, Sec. I, 4 Nov 
42, same sub. 

56 WD Cir 327, Sec. I, 27 Sep 42, sub: Utilization of 
Limited Service Enlisted Pers. 

57 Memo, Brig Gen Robert M. Littlejohn, Actg 
CofS, SOS ETO, for CG SOS ETO, 17 Nov 42, sub: 
Subjects Discussed with Gen Somervell. 

5S Insp Rpt, Lt Col Edgar A. Hendershot and Mr. 
J. A. Grey to TQMG, 10 May 43, sub: Insp of QM 



limited-service enlisted men. 59 In a con- 
certed move to make more men available 
for the theaters, ASF directed the service 
commands in June 1943 to replace gener- 
al-service personnel in zone of interior 
installations with limited-service men. The 
replacement was to take place at the rate 
of at least 5 percent a month, and by 31 
August 1 943 instructor staffs and overhead 
at replacement training centers, unit train- 
ing centers, and schools were to comprise a 
minimum of 80 percent limited-service 
men. This replacement program was ex- 
pected to release 21,000 general-service 
men for overseas duty. 60 The program had 
been in operation only a little more than a 
month when the War Department ordered 
limited service abolished as a classification 
category. In that brief period the number 
of limited-service men in the QMC oper- 
ating strength had increased to 1,586 — a 
gain of 170 — while the number of general- 
service men had declined to 6,956 — a loss 
of only 99. This release of general-service 
men fell far short of the projected replace- 
ment rate, but still could be considered 
moderately successful in the light of the 
fact that Headquarters, ASF, had allowed 
forty-five days to train each limited-service 
man as a replacement, and there had as 
yet been little time for this training. 61 

War Department Circular 161, which 
eliminated limited service effective 1 Au- 
gust 1943, did not ban physically limited 
men from serving in the Army. It merely 
provided that assignments were to be 
made on the basis of individual capacity 
rather than by type. Men who did not 
meet physical standards for general mili- 
tary service were still to be accepted for 
induction in controlled numbers, accept- 
ance being predicated on their ability, 
skill, intelligence, and aptitude. The circu- 
lar emphasized that men already in the 

service who failed to meet minimum phys- 
ical standards were to be discharged. 62 
Shortly before, the Army had lowered its 
personnel requirements for 1943 and thus 
lessened the need for limited-service men. 
Furthermore, the War Department in Au- 
gust published a list of defects that were to 
disqualify men for service overseas. These 
defects included such common ailments as 
hernia, perforated eardrums, and missing 
teeth, as well as neuropsychiatric condi- 
tions of any kind. 63 

The directives appear to have been in- 
terpreted generally as a desire on the part 
of the War Department to get rid of phys- 
ically limited men. The net result, at any 
rate, was a flood of discharges. The QMC 
during the three-month period, September 
through November 1943, released because 
of physical and mental defects more than 
1 7,000 men as compared with only 14,000 
for the entire previous fiscal year. 64 
Alarmed by the many discharges, the War 
Department rescinded Circular 161 in 
November and replaced it with Circular 
293, which formulated the basic policy for 
the remainder of the war. This revised 
policy prohibited, "as a waste of military 
manpower," the discharge of a man for 
physical reasons because he was "incapa- 

ss ASF Monthly Progress Rpt, Sec. 5, 30 Jun 43, 
sub: Pers, p. 12. Quartermaster Corps operating per- 
sonnel included instructors and other personnel assist- 
ing The Quartermaster General in carrying out his 

60 (1) Rpt, conf conducted by Brig Gen Walter L. 
Weible, Dir of Mil Tng Div, ASF, Pentagon, 7 Apr 
43. (2) ASF Gir 39, par. 17, 1 1 Jun 43, sub: Method 
of Authorizing, Reporting, and Controlling Pers. 

61 (1) Cir cited n. 60(2). (2) ASF Monthly Progress 
Rpt, Sec. 5, 31 Aug 43, p. 12. 

62 WD Cir 161, Sec. Ill, 14 Jul 43, sub: Elimination 
of the Term "Limited Service" with Reference to 

63 WD Cir 189, Sec. II, 21 Aug 43, sub: Disqualify- 
ing Defects for Oversea Service. 

64 (I) ASF Month ly Progress Rpts, Sec. 5, Sep, Oct, 
and Nov 43. (2) Se ej Table 1 4~| 


Table 14 — Separations of Enlisted Men From the QMC ° 

Fiscal Years 

Principal Causes 

1946 (First 





Two aVtonxhs 


Tntnl T^Pt T.ncc & 

If] fto? 

54, 878 


41, 765 

16, 949 

Battle Deaths 






Nonbattle Deaths 






Other Casualties « _. _ . 






Undesirable Character d 





Physical and Mental Disqualifications " 

2, 959 

14, 287 

34, 188 

25, 543 


To Accept Commissions 




3, 207 


To Become Warrant Officers _ _ _ . 




Retired __. _ . 





Expiration of Service. 

2, 715 

Over-age (Mostly over 38) 





Demobilization . „ 



10, 567 

4 Figures in this table include enlisted men who were in the QMC at the time of their separation, regardless of ocher branches of the 
Army in which they may have served previously. 

6 Minor causes for separations are not included. Consequently, columns do not add up to total net losses. 
f Includes missing, captured, interned, and unaccounted for. 

4 Includes those discharged for reasons other than honorable, involving moral turpitude. 

• Includes those discharged for all types of disability, from those not adaptable to military service for physical or mental reasons to those 
who were assigned to QMC but later were found to be unable to meet minimum physical induction standards. 
Soura: Compiled from records on file in Strength Accounting Br, AGO. 

ble of serving in a physically exacting 
position when he may well render ade- 
quate service in a less exacting assign- 
ment." 65 It also lowered the physical 
standards for overseas duty, permitting 
men with "mild psychoneurosis, transient 
in character," and men with missing teeth, 
provided "they have been able to follow a 
gainful occupation in civil life," to be sent 
abroad. Discharges from the QMC de- 
clined rather sharply after the publication 
of Circular 293, but the Corps released a 
total of more than 34,000 men for physical 
and mental reasons between 30 June 1943 
and 1 July 1944, as compared with 14,000 
in the similar period of 1942-43, and 
25,000 in the fiscal year 1945.™ 

Despite these discharges, men with phys- 
ical or mental limitations accumulated 

in the QMC to such an extent in 1944 
that their utilization and training became 
a serious problem. Their number was in- 
creasing daily with no outlet through 
requisitions or orders, according to a re- 
port by Brig. Gen. Wilbur R. McReyn- 
olds, director of the Military Training 
Division, OQMG, following an inspection 
tour of installations in July of that year. 
"They cannot," he stated, "be placed in 
replacements for overseas, in units for 
activation, in Zone of Interior because of 
lack of allowed overhead, and thus are 
clogging up the available housing." 67 He 

8a WD Cir 293, 11 Nov 43, sub: EM— Utilization of 
Manpo wer Based o n Physical Capacity. 
Iifl See |Table 14~| 

" 7 Rpt, Gen McReynolds, 1 2 Aug 44, sub: Insp 



also reported that individuals with mental 
abnormalities who had been designated 
by Army psychiatrists for light duty were 
handicapping the training program. Per- 
sonnel of this type, he declared, "grow by 
leaps and bounds, as they learn that they 
can be excused from training, or dis- 
charged by 'having' some eccentricity." 
This situation resulted in an increased rate 
of discharge of men from the QMC for 
physical and mental defects in the latter 
part of 1944. 

Physically and mentally limited men 
accumulated in the QMC in various ways. 
Many were newly inducted men directly 
from reception centers; some were debili- 
tated personnel returned from overseas; 
others were men who failed to meet phys- 
ical and mental requirements when their 
units were assigned to theaters; and still 
others were from units cannibalized to fill 
vacancies in other units. Considerable 
shifting of personnel was taking place 
among the various branches of the Army 
in the attempt to get all physically fit men 
overseas. Many general-service men who 
had been trained specifically for Quarter- 
master duties had to be reassigned to com- 
bat units to fill vacancies. Likewise, many 
were transferred to the QMC, particularly 
from combat units, and these generally 
were men unqualified to serve overseas. 68 

Quartermaster Corps efforts to release 
general-service enlisted personnel from op- 
erating jobs for overseas assignments en- 
countered considerable difficulty early in 
1944. This difficulty was not due to any 
scarcity of physically limited men to re- 
place them but rather to the fact that such 
a large portion of the men were key tech- 
nicians who were considered by their com- 
manders as irreplaceable in their zone of 
interior jobs and therefore temporarily dis- 
qualified for overseas duty. At the end of 

April 1944 the number of these men in the 
QMC totaled 3,098, or nearly 35 percent 
of its 8,884 enlisted operating strength. 
About the same number were either per- 
manently or temporarily disqualified for 
service in the theaters because they were 
physically or mentally limited, were over 
thirty-eight years of age, or had been in 
the service less than twelve months. Thus 
only 2,692, or 30 percent, of the QMC en- 
listed operating personnel were available 
immediately for overseas assignments. 
This was a rather poor showing, as five of 
the six other technical services were send- 
ing proportionately large numbers of their 
operating personnel abroad, as shown in 
the table on page 161. 69 

The QMC, however, overcame this dif- 
ficulty rapidly in the next few months. By 
training physically limited men, including 
debilitated personnel returned from over- 
seas, to fill jobs held by men formerly con- 
sidered "irreplaceable," the Corps reduced 
the number of key technicians tem- 
porarily disqualified for overseas duty 
from 3,098 in April to about 1,700 by the 
end of May. A month later it had trimmed 
the number to approximately 1,200 and, 
by the end of October, to a mere 77. Dur- 
ing the same period the QMC eliminated 
many unnecessary jobs and combined 
others in its efforts to conserve manpower, 
with the result that it reduced its enlisted 
operating personnel from 8,884 to ap- 
proximately 6,000, about 99 percent of 
which were men who either were perma- 
nently disqualified for overseas assignment 
or had already served abroad. Thus the 
QMC had accomplished its objective of 

r> * Address, Col Kester L. Hastings, QM Conf, 
Camp Lee, 2-4 Oct 44, sub: Current Pers Problems of 
the QMC. 

69 Compiled from ASF Monthly Progress Rpt, Sec. 
5, 30 Apr 44, sub: Pers, p. 29. 

Relative Availability of Enlisted Operating Strength for Overseas Duty 

Total Enlisted 

Available for Overseas Assignment 

Technical Service 





Chemical Warfare Service. _ _ - 




Transportation Corps _ . 

58, 029 

28, 058 


Ordnance Department . _ _ . __ 

12, 755 



Medical Department _. . _ 




Signal Corps 

8, 670 

2, 639 


Quartermaster Corps. _ __ . ._ .... 

8, 884 



Corps of Engineers 




making virtually all of its general-service 
personnel available for duty in the thea- 
ters. 70 

The Physical Profile Plan 
and the QMC 

In the meantime the Army classification 
and assignment system had been revised 
radically by the introduction of the phys- 
ical profile plan. This plan was adopted 
formally about the middle of May 1944, 
after having been tried out experimentally 
earlier in the year. It provided that all 
men, except critically needed specialists, 
were to be assigned from reception centers 
to the three major commands on the basis 
of their physical capacities rather than 
their occupational skills. 

The procedure was highly complex, but 
the essence of the plan was that an esti- 
mate of each inductee's physique, stamina, 
and emotional stability was to be made at 
the reception center by means of a phys- 
ical examination. He then was to be as- 
signed a physical profile serial to denote 
the degree of his physical fitness and on 
that basis placed in one of four categories, 
or profiles, designated by the letters, A, B, 
C, and D. 

Profile A signified men who were quali- 

fied for rigorous combat duty. Inductees 
who were placed in Profile B qualified for 
less strenuous combat duty and for service 
in or near battle areas, while those in Pro- 
file C were restricted to duty in base posi- 
tions either in this country or overseas. 
Profile D designated men who were below 
minimum standards for induction. 71 

The objective of the plan was to chan- 
nel inductees possessing the best physical 
qualifications to the AGF, which had been 
protesting for many months that the men 
available for its combat units were below 
the Army average physically and mentally. 
The shortage of men qualified for combat 
duty had become critical by the middle of 
1944. At the same time, with mobilization 
in its final phases, the demand for occupa- 
tional specialists had subsided. The net re- 
sult was that the War Department finally 
yielded to the wishes of the AGF and in- 
stalled the system that the latter had 

The profile plan was adopted over the 
objections of General Somervell, com- 
manding general of the ASF, who took is- 
sue with the AGF, declaring that "except 

711 ASF Monthly Progress Rpts, Sec. 5, May, Jun, 
and Oct, 44. 

71 WD Memo W40-44, 18 May 44, sub: Physical 
Profile Plan. 



for individuals possessing critical skills, the 
best physically qualified men are being as- 
signed to the Army Ground Forces." He 
expressed the conviction that the plan was 
so complex that it would "destroy the pur- 
pose for which it is designed," and recom- 
mended the adoption of a "workable sys- 
tem" that "will accomplish the results for 
which the profile system is proposed in a 
simple and efficient manner." He went on 
to say: 

No matter what system of marking men is 
devised, the using services will still receive 
what is available in accordance with allotted 
quotas. The labeling of a man by a profile 
system will not improve his physical ability. 
The application of the profile system in the 
manner that has been proposed will result in 
overloading the people charged with assign- 
ment with a mass of unwieldy and unman- 
ageable details. The end result of such a com- 
plex system will be wastage rather than con- 
servation of our military manpower. 72 

Under the profile system the War De- 
partment established the quotas of induc- 
tees to be assigned to the three major com- 
mands on the basis of reports from recep- 
tion centers showing the number of men 
available for assignment in each profile. 
The ASF and the AAF quotas were to be 
filled from the residue of men left after the 
reception centers had skimmed the best 
physically qualified individuals for the 
AGF. At least 80 percent of the men allo- 
cated to the AGF were to be in Profile A, 
and 10 percent each in Profiles B and C. 
In contrast, only 40 percent of the men as- 
signed to the ASF were to be in Profile A, 
while 40 percent were to be in Profile B, 
and 20 percent in Profile C. 

Aside from the fact that the AGF had 
first choice, the contrast was not as sharp 
as it might first appear because 80 percent 
of the ASF men were to be in the two top 
c; tegories, as compared with 90 percent of 

the AGF assignments. The ASF fared bet- 
ter than the AAF, which was to receive 
only 10 percent of its men in Profile A, 50 
percent in Profile B, and 40 percent in 
Profile C. 

Within these percentage distributions 
by profile, reception centers were directed 
to assign the men insofar as possible in ac- 
cordance with their Army General Classi- 
fication Test scores, occupational experi- 
ence, education, and previous military 
training, as they formerly had done. Thus 
the only major change in classification and 
assignment procedure brought about by 
the profile plan was at the reception cen- 
ter level in classifying and distributing 
men to the three major commands accord- 
ing to their degree of physical fitness. 

The preference given the AGF in the as- 
signment of the best physically qualified 
men occurred at a time when the country's 
manpower supply was running low and 
the general quality of inductees was de- 
clining. This situation doubly restricted 
the quality of men available to the ASF 
for distribution to the QMC and the other 
six technical services. 

Requirements of the ASF for the first 
six months of operation under the profile 
plan were listed at 1 10,000 men, of whom 
the QMC was to receive 15,000. The 
OQMG proposed that ASF headquarters 
assign 31 percent of these men in Profile 
A, 54 percent in Profile B, and only 15 
percent in Profile C. 73 The distribution es- 
tablished by the ASF, however, placed a 
slightly larger portion in Profile A, but a 
considerably greater percentage in Profile 
C than the OQMG had suggested. More- 

Memo, Gen Somervell for ACofS G-l, 21 Mar 
44, sub: Physical Profile Plan for EM. 

7:1 (1) DF, G-l, WDGS, to MPD, ASF, 5 May 44, 
sub; Physical Profile Plan. (2) Opns Br, Mil Ping Div, 
to Conf Control Off, OQMG, 10 May 44, sub: Rpt of 

Percentage Distribution Under the Physical Profile Plan 

Technical Service 

Percent in Profile A 

Percent in Profile B 

Percent in Profile C 







Quartermaster Corps _ . 







Corps of Engineers 







Chemical Warfare Service ... .. . 






Medical Department _ . - . 







Ordnance Department, _ _ _ _ 






Signal Corps . ______ 







Transportation Corps 






over, the distribution was broken down 
into whites and Negroes, and the percent- 
ages of these varied extensively. Only 25 
percent of the whites were to be in Profile 
A, 25 percent in Profile B, and 50 percent 
in Profile C, compared with 55 percent, 15 
percent, and 30 percent, respectively, of 
the Negroes. Thus only half of the QMC 
whites were to be in the two top cate- 
gories, in contrast to three fourths in the 
Corps of Engineers, the Chemical Warfare 
Service, and the Signal Corps. In the case 
of Negroes, the QMC was to get 70 per- 
cent in the two top profiles, but even in 
this regard it fared little if any better than 
most of the other services, except for the 
Ordnance Department, which was to get 
only 10 percent in these two categories, 
and 90 percent in Profile C, as shown in 
the table at the top of the page. 74 

Owing to the fact that its peak strength 
was attained nine months ahead of that of 
the Army as a whole, the QMC probably 
was the least affected of all the arms and 
services by the profile plan. When the 
plan went into operation the Corps 
already had more than 496,000 personnel, 
which was within 6,000 of its top strength. 
Thus most of the men assigned to it by 
profile were for replacements, and, since 
the trend in the strength of the Corps was 

downward after the fall of 1944, these re- 
quirements were comparatively small. 
Moreover, any specialists critically needed 
by the Corps could be obtained outside the 
profile plan. 

Classification by Intellectual Capacity 

The QMC was more directly concerned 
with the intelligence of its personnel than 
it was with their physical capacity. Occu- 
pational skill, of course, was of first impor- 
tance since every man in the Corps, unless 
assigned to perform manual labor, had to 
be a specialist of some sort. A large propor- 
tion of the men received from reception 
centers, however, either possessed no skill 
at all or no skills that could be utilized. 
Both kinds had to be trained for jobs that 
would make them useful to the QMC, and 
it was necessary that the men have suffi- 
cient intelligence to absorb this training in 
the time that could be devoted to it. 

An index of a man's intellectual capac- 
ity or ability to learn was provided by the 
Army General Classification Test (AGCT) 
given at the reception center. Through 
this test, devised in collaboration with ex- 
perts in psychology and personnel man- 

" Based on ASF Cir 175, Sec. VIII, 10 Jun 4-4, sub: 
Physical Profile Plan. 



agement, the Army sought to determine a 
man's native intellectual endowment and 
the effects of education and social experi- 
ence upon his practical intelligence. Se- 
lectees were grouped into five grades on 
the basis of their AGCT scores. Grade I 
designated men in the highest bracket of 
intellectual capacity, while Grade V indi- 
cated those in the lowest group. Men rated 
as having average intelligence were placed 
in Grade III. Only men in Grades I or II 
were eligible to become officer candi- 
dates. 75 

Despite an Army Regulation that no 
unit was to be "unduly burdened with the 
training of a disproportionate number of 
men in the lower brackets of mental abil- 
ity,' ' 76 the QMC did receive an unusually 
large percentage of men in Grades IV and 
V, a situation that handicapped training 
and operations. Records compiled at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC revealed that 36 per- 
cent of the 87,325 white selectees received 
there between 1 September 1941 and 28 
February 1943 were below average in in- 
telligence as rated by the AGCT. White 
selectees constituted 72 percent of the total 
number of trainees sent to the QMRTC 
during this period. Similar records are not 
available on Negro trainees. The fact that 
the proportion of Negroes falling in these 
two lower grades was normally greater 
than that of whites would indicate that the 
over-all average was probably higher than 
36 percent. 77 

The situation became worse as the war 
progressed and the caliber of selectees 
declined. During the six-month period 
March through August 1942, men classi- 
fied in the two lower brackets accounted 
for 42 percent of all personnel received by 
the two QMRTC's. The proportion in- 
creased still further in 1943 when more 
than 87,000 out of a total of about 165,000 

men sent to the QMC from reception cen- 
ters were in Grades IV and V. This figure 
represented nearly 53 percent for the 
QMC as contrasted with an average of 
about 32 percent for the other six technical 
services and only 27 percent for the AAF. 78 

Conversely, the QMC received a 
smaller proportion of men of above-aver- 
age intelligence than any other arm or 
service except the Transportation Corps. 
Only 21 percent of the selectees assigned 
to the QMC during 1943 were in Grades I 
and II, as compared with 42 percent to the 
AAF, 58 percent to the Signal Corps, and 
an average of about 30 percent to the 
other five technical services. 79 This alloca- 
tion imposed another severe handicap on 
the QMC, inasmuch as these two top cate- 
gories were the source of its officer candi- 
dates, the majority of its noncommissioned 
officers, most of its highly skilled techni- 
cians, and many of its enlisted instructors. 

The commanding general of the Camp 
Lee QMRTC protested as early as Sep- 
tember 1941 that too many men with low 
intellectual capacities were being received 
from reception centers. He reported that 
half of the men in the two lower grades 
had been classified as basic, meaning that 
they did not possess usable skills, and that 
their limited mental abilities made it un- 
likely that they could become specialists in 
the normal time allotted to training. Many 
of these men, he pointed out, "were out- 
standing physical specimens and could 

75 AR 615-25, Sec. VII, 3 Sep 40, sub: EM— Classi- 

76 AR 615-28, Sec. I, par. 2, 29 May 42, sub: EM— 
Classification and Assignment. 

77 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. 1, App. 4, pp. 2-3. 

78 See Robert R. Palmer, Bell I. Wiley, and William 
R. Keast, The Procurement and Training of Ground Com- 
WAR II (Washington, 1948), tables, pp. 17, 18. 

,s Ibid. 



have readily been trained as soldiers in 
one of the arms." He recommended that 
fewer men in Grades IV and V be assigned 
to the QMC. 80 The General Staff rejected 
this proposal. Ignoring the fact that the 
QMC actually was getting more than its 
representative portion of such personnel, 
G-l declared that all arms and services 
should receive their "proportionate share" 
of Grade IV and V men, and predicted 
that in view of the contemplated expan- 
sion of the Army "it may become increas- 
ingly necessary to absorb larger numbers 
of these men." 81 

Apparently the QMC received an un- 
usually large number of men in Grades IV 
and V on the assumption that most of 
them could be absorbed in service units. It 
was true that a sizable number of men in 
the lower grades could be so used. Person- 
nel requirements for the service units, how- 
ever, accounted for only about one fourth 
of the total QMC needs, whereas more 
than half of its assigned personnel were in 
the two lower categories. Thus the Corps 
was confronted with the necessity of train- 
ing the major share of its Grade IV and V 
men for specialized occupations that nor- 
mally called for a higher degree of intel- 
lectual capacity. 

The Problem of Illiterates 

While below-average intellectual capac- 
ity in itself presented a training problem, 
the most serious difficulty stemmed from 
illiterates, non-English-speaking person- 
nel, and Grade V men. Personnel in these 
categories were not immediately capable 
of undergoing normal QMRTC training. 
They had to be assigned to special training 
units and given elementary schooling in 
such subjects as reading, writing, spelling, 
English, and arithmetic to enable them to 

comprehend and follow instructions so 
that they could participate in the regular 
training courses. 

The men in these categories possessed 
widely varying potentialities. Foreign- 
born, for instance, might be educated in 
their native language and have only to 
learn to read and write English, or they 
might be illiterate in both languages. Even 
American-born illiterates differed exten- 
sively in aptitude. Many could absorb in- 
struction quickly and advance rapidly to 
the point where they could be reclassified 
and reassigned to training as specialists. 
Some could qualify only for manual labor 
tasks, while others were so mentally inept 
or unstable that they had to be discharged 
as useless to the Army. 

This problem was only a minor one dur- 
ing the emergency period and the early 
months of the war. Mobilization Regula- 
tions then in effect authorized the Army to 
reject men who did not have "the capacity 
of reading and writing the English lan- 
guage as commonly prescribed in the 
fourth grade in grammar school." 82 Never- 
theless, the two QMRTC's were giving or 
had given special schooling and training to 
a total of approximately 500 inductees by 
January 1942. 83 The bulk of these were in 
the illiterate, non-English-speaking, and 
Grade V categories, but also included 
were some men with physical limitations 
who were unable to undergo normal 

^ Ltr, Gen Hartman, CG QMRC, Camp Lee, to 
TQMG, 24 Sep 41 , sub: Occupational Specialists Rate 
for QMRTCs. 

81 2d Ind, AGO to TQMG, 10 Dec 41, on Memo, 
ACofS G-l for TQMG, 12 Nov 41, sub: Occupa- 
tional Specialists Rate for QMRTCs. 

H2 MR 1-7, Change 9, 18 Apr 41, sub: Reception of 
Selective Sv Men. 

83 (1) Rpt, Camp Lee QMRTC to TQMG, 23 Jan 
42, sub: Special Tng Units. (2) Rpt, Ft. Warren 
QMRTC to TQMG, 29 Jan 42, sub: Special Tng Co, 



training. The number of illiterates and 
non-English-speaking personnel in the 
QMC increased rapidly after the summer 
of 1942 when the War Department 
adopted new induction standards based 
on intelligence rather than literacy. Induc- 
tion stations were authorized to accept 10 
percent each of the white and Negro se- 
lectees processed daily who were unable to 
read or write English at a fourth-grade 
standard, provided they were able to un- 
derstand simple orders given in English 
and possessed "sufficient intelligence to 
absorb military training rapidly." S4 With- 
in three months, however, the greatly in- 
creased influx of inductees of this type was 
overtaxing the capacities of the training 
centers of all the technical services . The re- 
sult was that SOS headquarters reduced 
to 3V$ percent the ratio of illiterates who 
could be assigned to the QMC and most of 
the other technical services. 85 

Despite this restriction, enrollment in 
QMC special training units continued to 
show a marked increase. The number of 
men requiring special training at the Camp 
Lee QMRTC, for example, averaged 
nearly 1,100 a month during the first half 
of 1943, in contrast to less than 450 a 
month in the second half of 1942. 88 The 
QMC was relieved of the responsibility for 
the initial training of such personnel after 
the middle of 1943, when the War De- 
partment transferred the special training 
units of all of the arms and services to the 
reception centers. 87 Thereafter "unteach- 
ables" were weeded out at the reception 
center level and only men believed to be 
capable of pursuing normal training were 
assigned to the QMC. 

Although this eased the training load it 
did not reduce the proportion of Grade V 
personnel assigned to the QMC nor the 
problem of fitting them into useful jobs. 

For example, an inspection late in 1943 of 
the 558th Battalion, Headquarters and 
Headquarters Detachment, and four at- 
tached companies in training at Fort 
Leonard Wood, Mo., revealed that 580 of 
the 813 enlisted men in these units were in 
Grade V. 

Similarly, the personnel consultant at 
the ASF Unit Training Center at Fort 
Devens, Mass., estimated that during the 
period March through June 1944 about 
25 percent of all incoming QMC troops 
and 50 percent of the men received from 
special training units were below the mini- 
mum literacy standards of the Army. The 
low state of morale and mental adjustment 
of these men constituted a serious training 
problem, as illustrated by the fact that 
there were more than 175 court-martial 
cases in less than four months. The situa- 
tion at Fort Devens, however, was an ex- 
treme example inasmuch as the majority 
of the units trained there were service 
companies and were comprised of Negro 
personnel whose educational background 
and intelligence were far below average. 
Furthermore, a large portion of the men 
had been transferred from the AGF and 
represented the least desirable element in 
that command. 88 

Upon completion of instruction in a 
special training unit the trainees were in- 

SJ WD Cir 1 69, Sec. IV, 1 Jun 42, sub: Literacy 

SOS Memo S615-2-42, 24 Aug 42, sub: Limita- 
tions on Tng Capacity for Illiterates at SOS RTCs. 

Rfl Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. 1, App. 5, p. 8. 

87 Ltr, AGO to All SvCs, 28 May 43, sub: Establish- 
ment of Special Tng Units, SPX 353 (5-14-43)OB- 

88 (1) Insp Rpt, Col Hendershot to TQMG, 4 Jan 
44, sub: QM Activities, 333. 1. (2) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG, for ASF, Tng of Units (Pts. I, II, and III, 
1 Jul 39-31 Dec 44, n. d.) Pt. I, Ft. Devens Sec, pp. 
10-11. (Hereafter cited as Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of 



terviewed by classification officers who de- 
termined whether the men had advanced 
sufficiently to begin normal training for 
specific jobs in the QMC. Personnel who 
had progressed satisfactorily were reas- 
signed to either basic or technical training. 
Men who had learned to read and write 
to such an extent that they could under- 
stand and follow instructions but who 
showed no aptitude for other than man- 
ual-labor jobs were assigned to service 
units. Illiterates and men with mental 
handicaps who had not reached the de- 
sired level of proficiency within three 
months were subject to discharge. 

Disposition records at the Camp Lee 
QMRTC during the period from the ac- 
tivation of special training units there in 
May 1942 until 15 January 1943 show 
that 60 percent of the enrolled personnel 
were sent to technical schools for training 
as specialists and 31 percent to service 
units, while 5 percent were discharged and 
4 percent were given jobs as furnace 
tenders. 89 

Preferential Assignment to the Navy 
and the Army Air Forces 

There were several reasons why most of 
the men available to the QMC were of 
relatively low intellectual caliber. One 
was the lack of a central classification and 
assignment system whereby men from 
civilian life could be distributed more 
equitably between the Army and the 
Navy. The Navy, including the Marine 
Corps, obtained all of its personnel from 
volunteers until the end of 1942. 

Thus many thousands of better-edu- 
cated, top-quality men, mentally and 
physically, who volunteered or were com- 
missioned in the Navy or Marine Corps, 
remained outside selective-service opera- 

tions and were never available to the 
Army for distribution to the arms and 
services. The AAF too, until 1943, was 
able to operate pretty much outside of se- 
lective service as a result of the Army 
policy in effect at the time, which permit- 
ted men of draft age to volunteer for a 
specific branch of service. The glamorous 
aspects of the air service plus the higher 
pay attracted the great majority of the 
volunteers to the AAF. These volunteers 
had to meet exceptionally high intellectual 
and physical standards on the assumption 
that they were to be trained as pilots. Not 
all of the men, of course, qualified for fly- 
ing positions. Most of them, nevertheless, 
remained in the AAF, and many were as- 
signed to menial tasks far below their 
capabilities, despite the fact that they 
might have been utilized for higher-grade 
jobs in the QMC or elsewhere in the 
Army. The net result was that the Navy, 
Marine Corps, and the AAF had their 
pick of men from civilian life throughout 
most of the mobilization period at the ex- 
pense of the QMC, the other technical 
services, and the AGF. 

The availability to the QMC of men 
with above-average and even average in- 
tellectual capacity was restricted still fur- 
ther by the War Department's priority 
system of distributing personnel to the 
arms and services. In the favored position 
again was the AAF, which had top priority 
on assignment of men by intellectual ca- 
pacity from early in 1942 until 1944, 
when the AGF finally was given first call 
on men of high intelligence because of the 
increasing difficulty experienced by com- 
bat units in obtaining high-grade men. 

The QMC was virtually at the bottom 
of this priority list, primarily because one 

8S * RpL Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. I, App. 5, p. 19. 



of its functions was to operate the service 
units that could utilize men of low intelli- 
gence. Inasmuch as the Army's supply of 
Grade I and II men was limited to begin 
with, it was inevitable that comparatively 
few top-quality men would still be avail- 
able when the War Department got 
around to filling the requirements of the 

The Number and Quality of Negro Troops 
in the QMC 

While the general quality of Negro sol- 
diers in the QMC did not vary to any sig- 
nificant extent from that of those in the 
Army as a whole, their training and utili- 
zation presented a special problem pri- 
marily because the Corps had far more of 
them than any other arm or service. The 
peak Negro strength of the Corps was 
slightly more than 221,000 on 31 Decem- 
ber 1944. The number of Negroes in the 
entire Army at that time was approxi- 
mately 692,000. Thus the QMC, although 
comprising only a little more than 6 per- 
cent of the total personnel of the Army, 
had nearly 32 percent of all the Negroes. 90 

The only other arm or service with a 
Negro strength even approaching that of 
the QMC was the Corps of Engineers. Yet 
the Engineers had fewer than 137,000 Ne- 
groes out of a total personnel of nearly 
700,000, while the QMC had more than 
22 1 ,000 out of a total strength of approxi- 
mately 500,000. Although the Transporta- 
tion Corps was third with 85,000 Negroes, 
it ranked second in percentage of Negro 
personnel because it was only half as large 
as the QMC. The ratios in the arms were 
considerably smaller. For example, the 
AAF, with approximately five times the 
total strength of the QMC, had only one 
third as many Negroes; the Infantry had 

less than one fourth as many. 91 

This heavy concent ration of Negroes in 
the QMC was inconsistent with the policy 
laid down by Mobilization Regulations 
and a War Department directive that all 
arms and services absorb Negro personnel 
generally on the basis of the proportion of 
Negroes in the population of the country, 
which was 10.6 percent. 92 It created a seri- 
ous difficulty for several basic reasons. One 
of these was that while some of the Negroes 
possessed outstanding ability, most of them 
were in the two lowest AGCT grades be- 
cause of limited educational opportunities 
and deficiencies in environmental back- 
ground. Approximately 85 percent of all 
Negroes sent to the QMC by reception 
centers between September 1941 and May 
1944 were classified in AGCT Grades IV 

H0 (1) Monthly Rpt, AGO to WDGS, Strength of 
the Army, 1 Aug 45, sub: Monthly and Quarterly 
Negro Strength of the Army, p. 53. (2) For a general 
discussion of the utilization of Negroes in the Army, 
see Ulysses G. Lee, The Employment of Negro 
Troops, a volume in preparation for UNITED 

91 Rpt cited n. 90(1), 1 Jan 45, pp. 38-39. The 
following table shows how the Negro strength of the 
other technical services and the principal combat 
arms compared with that of the QMC on 3 1 Dec 44: 

Negro Personnel 

Arm or Service 







220, 529 

Enftineers . 

136, 836 


136, 435 




69, 776 


68, 888 

Infantry _ 

54, 189 

1, 123 









19, 587 

15, 051 



Field Artillery 

11, 136 



Chemical Warfare ._ 




1,2 (1) MR 1-2, Sec. 1, par. 2, 15 Jul 39, sub: Bal- 
ancing White and Negro Manpower. (2) WD Ltr to 
TQMG et al., 16 Oct 40, sub: WD Policy in Regard 
to Negroes, AG 291.21 (10-9-40) N-A-M. 



or V. 93 A total of 36.5 percent were in 
Grade V, which meant that an average of 
365 out of each 1,000 Negroes allocated to 
the QMC needed special instruction be- 
fore they could undertake regular training. 

It usually required about twice as long 
to prepare Grade V men for service in 
units as it did those who were capable im- 
mediately of undergoing normal training. 
The fact that a man was classified in 
Grade V did not mean necessarily that he 
lacked native intelligence; rather, it some- 
times indicated the lack of an opportunity 
to develop latent ability. Many of the 
Grade V men were able to assimilate train- 
ing after preliminary instruction in the 
special units and eventually became effi- 
cient soldiers. At the same time, there was 
always a sizable number of Grade V men 
in each special training unit — white as 
well as Negro — who did not have the men- 
tal capacity to learn and had to be dis- 
charged. The significant difference was 
that among the whites the proportion of 
Grade V men was small enough that the 
problem could be solved without too much 
difficulty, but among the Negroes the per- 
centage was so high that it presented a 
serious obstacle in organizing effective 

Another reason for the seriousness of the 
problem was that the work of Negroes in 
civilian life had been generally of a less 
skilled nature than that of whites, and 
comparatively fewer of them had acquired 
occupational specialties — even the more 
commonplace ones. For instance while the 
supply of white clerks far exceeded QMC 
requirements, among the Negroes there 
was even a shortage of men with clerical 
aptitudes. 94 The civilian background of a 
large portion of the Negroes fitted them 
for classification only as laborers. The ma- 
jority of the others were classified by recep- 

tion centers as basics. This created a par- 
ticularly acute problem since there were 
shortages of so many skills among the Ne- 
gro trainees and such a large proportion 
of the men were of below-average intelli- 
gence that it was difficult to convert them 
into skilled technicians. Negroes with me- 
chanical experience or aptitude were in 
shortest supply, and this was a handicap 
in organizing Negro mobile units that re- 
quired mechanics. 

An additional reason for the difficulty 
stemmed from the fact that relatively few 
of the Negroes possessed the qualities nec- 
essary for assuming leadership. Only 15 
percent of the Negroes shipped to the 
QJMC from reception centers between 
September 1941 and May 1944 were in 
the three upper brackets of the AGCT. 95 
Less than 3 percent were in Grades I and 
II and therefore eligible to become officer 
candidates. The QMC had to rely pri- 
marily upon the other 1 2 percent for its 
noncommissioned officers, instructors, and 
supervisors. Thus there was a critical 
shortage of Negroes with the leadership 
qualifications necessary for establishing 
the large number of Negro units required 
to utilize Negro personnel in separate 

The OQMG considered this problem so 
serious early in 1943 that it declared in a 
memorandum to the Commanding Gen- 
eral, SOS, that the situation would im- 
pede the QMC in carrying out its func- 
tions in the field. 

"■' [1st Ind], AGO to CG USASOS, c/o Postmaster 
San Francisco, Cal., 16 Oct 44, no sub, inclosing a sta- 
tistical rpt, sub: Percentage Distribution of AGCT 
Scores of Negro EM Forwarded from RCs to RTCs 
and Units, AG 220.01 (26 Jul 44). 

84 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. 1, App. r, p 5. 
afl Ind and rpt cited n. 93. 



Difficulty is being experienced in obtaining 
sufficient colored personnel of the required 
ability and leadership qualifications. A high 
percentage of inductees having classifications 
[grades] of 1 and 2 are being assigned to the 
Army Air Forces. The qualifications of the 
personnel being assigned to the Quartermas- 
ter Corps are such that they cannot be used 
as superintendents, foremen, or in very many 
positions except positions of unskilled labor. 
In all Quartermaster Corps organizations 
such as laundry companies, bakery com- 
panies, salvage repair companies, gasoline 
supply and railhead operations there are 
many positions in all grades which require a 
higher degree of intelligence, schooling, edu- 
cation, and skill than is found among the 
colored selectees being assigned to the Quar- 
termaster Corps. By requiring the Quarter- 
master Corps to absorb this high percentage 
[of Negroes] the result will be that the Quar- 
termaster Service will not be able to main- 
tain its place in the team with other Services, 
and the accomplishment of the Service's mis- 
sion on the field of battle will be impeded. 96 

This problem never was resolved satis- 
factorily, but it was alleviated to some ex- 
tent in several ways. One of these was to 
put white officers in charge of Negro units 
and then replace them as extensively as 
possible by Negro officers as soon as the 
latter could qualify. Another remedial 
measure consisted of concentrating the 
bulk of Negroes into a relatively few types 
of units. 67 

Despite the steps taken to solve the 
problem, considerable difficulty was ex- 
perienced in finding qualified personnel 
for the many Negro units, in maintaining 
the units at T/O strength, in training the 
required number of specialists, and in get- 
ting the units to the theaters of operations 
on schedule. Overseas shipment dates of 
units with a disproportionate percentage 
of low AGCT grades frequently had to be 
deferred because the units could not com- 
plete training and pass the required in- 
spection in the allotted time. 98 

During the emergency period and the 
early months of the war, the Army fell far 
short of taking its prescribed quota of Ne- 
groes, primarily because of the shortage of 
Negro housing and training cadres. In 
spite of this, the Negro strength of the 
QMC increased at a relatively faster rate 
than did the white strength. The peace- 
time organization of the Corps in mid- 
1939 included only 89 Negroes out of a 
total enlisted personnel of about 10,500, 
yet by June 1940 the number had grown 
to more than 14,000 and represented 
nearly 22 percent of the enlisted personnel 
in QMC units." 

Taking cognizance of this situation, the 
Assistant Chief of Staff, G-3, declared: "It 
is apparent that an undue proportion of 
Negro personnel is assigned to units of the 
Engineers and the Quartermaster Corps, 
while other arms and services either have 
no colored units or have a disproportion- 
ately small number of them." 100 He rec- 
ommended that all arms and services, 
with the exception of the Air Corps and 
the Signal Corps, be required "to accept 
for assignment in appropriate units a rea- 
sonable proportion of Negro personnel." 
Both the Personnel and the War Plans 
Divisions of the General Staff objected to 

96 Memo, Maj Gen Corbin, Actg TQMG, for CG 
SOS, 25 Jan 43, sub: Pers, 1943 TrB, 320.2. 

97 The Protective Mobilization Plan of 1940 re- 
stricted the utilization of Negroes in the QMC to serv- 
ice, remount, and truck regiments; service and port 
battalions; railhead and salvage companies; and pack 
trains. This 1940 plan was soon abandoned, and the 
Troop Bases of the war period called for Negroes in al- 
most every type of unit, but the QMC restricted their 
use to a comparatively few types. 

9 * Memo, Gen Feldman, DQMG for Sup Ping, for 
CG ASF, 28 Jan 44, sub: Current and Anticipated 
Problems Confronting the QMC. 

a9 Strength records, EM Sec, Pers and Tng Div, 
OQMG. The 89 Negroes constituted one truck unit 
and one detachment. 

100 Memo, ACofS G-3 for CofS, 3 Jun 40, sub: Em- 
ployment of Negro Manpower, AG 322.97. 



exempting the Air Corps and the Signal 
Corps. They insisted that both of these 
branches should also employ Negro per- 
sonnel. Their objection was sustained and 
the War Department policy, adopted in 
October 1940, provided that "Negro or- 
ganizations will be established in each 
major branch of the service, combatant as 
well as non-combatant," and that Negroes 
"will be utilized on a fair and equitable 
basis." 101 

This policy led to a somewhat more 
equitable distribution of Negro personnel 
among the other branches of the Army, 
but the proportion of Negroes to total 
strength in the QMC continued to grow 
and remained far greater than that for any 
other arm or service. By the end of 1942 
they represented more than 28 percent of 
the Corps' strength. 102 

This growing concentration of Negroes 
in the QMC had already become a matter 
of concern to its top-ranking officers, but 
they became alarmed late in 1942 when 
the War Department made known its 
plans for 1943. The 1943 Troop Basis, 
which called for a sharp increase in the 
number of Negro inductees in an attempt 
to bring the proportion up to the specified 
10.6 percent of total Army personnel, pro- 
vided that Negroes were to comprise 60 
percent of the men assigned to the QMC 
during 1943. Brig. Gen. James L. Frink, 
the Deputy Quartermaster General for 
Supply Planning and Operations, sent a 
memorandum on 30 November 1942 to 
the Plans Division, SOS, urging strongly 
that the Troop Basis figures be revised to 
include fewer Negroes. 103 

When this request failed to bring any 
action, Maj. Gen. Clifford L. Corbin, Act- 
ing The Quartermaster General, sent a 
protest in January 19,43 directly to the 
Commanding General, SOS: 

This office is in receipt of an advance copy 
of the 1943 Troop Basis for Quartermaster 
Units, comprising a strength of 56,456 of 
which 33,619 are colored enlisted personnel. 
Your attention is invited to the fact that this 
allocation requires 60% of this year's Troop 
Basis to be colored personnel, with Quarter- 
master troops in the entire Army totaling only 
approximately 6%; and places upon the 
Quartermaster Corps the responsibility for 
activating Quartermaster Units destined for 
operation with the armed forces in the field 
with a higher percentage of Negro troops 
than allocated to any other service in the 
Army. This is more striking when we con- 
sider that Negro personnel in Quartermaster 
Units (1 1 1,962) will represent 14.83% of all 
Negro enlisted personnel in the entire Army, 
and again the Quartermaster Corps is re- 
quired to operate its highly specialized and 
technical units with 33.39% of its personnel 
Negro enlisted men. ... It is therefore ur- 
gently recommended that the 1943 Troop 
Basis be revised accordingly and that allot- 
ments and percentage of colored Quarter- 
master Corps personnel be in keeping with 
that assigned to other Arms and Services. 104 

General Corbin's recommendation was 
forwarded to the General Staff for a deci- 
sion. The prompt reply was that the QMC 
request for a decrease in allotment of 
Negroes "cannot be favorably considered 
at this time due to the fact that personnel 
so rendered surplus would have to be ab- 
sorbed by combat units." The General 
Staff admitted that the proportion of 
Negroes assigned to the Corps was high, 
but stated that "the type of units to which 
it has been allocated are those wherein 
Negro personnel may be expected to func- 

" n Ltr, AGO to TQMG el al., 16 Oct 40, sub: WD 
Policy in Regard to Negroes, AG 291.21 (10-9-40) 

102 Memo, Brig Gen James L. Frink, OQMG, for 
Lt Col Lester D. Flory, Plans Div, SOS, 30 Nov 42, 
sub: Proposed Activation of QM Units. 1943, 320.2. 

105 Ibid. 

u,i Memo, Gen Corbin, Actg TQMG, for CG SOS, 
25 Jan 43, sub: Pers, 1943 TrB, 320.2. 



tion with reasonable efficiency." 105 

It was becoming evident that the War 
Department — contrary to its declared 
policy of equitable distribution — had de- 
termined to allot a large proportion of the 
Negro inductees to the QMC for the 
simple reason that it believed that the 
Corps, presumably because of its service 
units, was in a better position to absorb 
Negro personnel than any other branch of 
the Army. This policy prevailed through- 
out the remainder of the war, and the 
OQMG was forced to resign itself to mak- 
ing the best of the situation. The policy led 
to a steady increase in the ratio of enlisted 
Negro personnel to total enlisted personnel 
in the Corps. The proportion rose to more 
than 33 percent by reason of the 1943 
Troop Basis allocations, and before the end 
of the war it had reached approximately 
49 percent. 106 

The net result was that Negroes accu- 
mulated in the QMC faster than they 
could be utilized. General McReynolds, 
director of the Military Training Division, 
OQMG, reported in January 1944 that 
Negro personnel were being sent to the 
QMC in excess of theater requirements. 
He complained that, while new units were 
being activated which might absorb this 
surplus personnel, no authority could be 
obtained from the War Department to 
transfer these men to the new units for the 
reason that the units had been directed to 
obtain their personnel directly from recep- 
tion centers. 107 

Shipments of Negroes to the QMC con- 
tinued to run ahead of requirements in 
1945. During March, April, and May, for 
example, arrivals at the Camp Lee ASF 
Training Center of Negro inductees as- 
signed to the QMC exceeded quotas by 
approximately 200 percent. An inspection 

made in June of that year at the Camp 
Lee center revealed that there were nearly 
600 Negroes at this one installation alone 
for whom no suitable assignments existed, 
and that it had become necessary to dis- 
charge a large portion of them. 108 

Utilization of Negroes in the QMC 
varied from utilization of whites primarily 
in that the ratio of Negroes used as laborers 
was much larger; that the proportion 
trained for motor-maintenance work was 
smaller; and that no Negroes were utilized 
in certain types of units, notably remount, 
war dog, petroleum laboratories, sales, and 
graves registration. Approximately 25 per- 
cent of all the Negroes received at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC during the five-year 
period June 1939 through June 1944 
were trained as laborers, in contrast to 
only 7 percent of the whites. The differ- 
ence was less marked in motor-mainte- 
nance instruction, with 1 1 percent of the 
Negroes and 15 percent of the whites 
trained for this type of work. 

More Negroes were trained as truck 
drivers — 27 percent — than for any other 
job, though the proportion was only 
slightly higher than for laborers. Clerks, 
cooks, mess sergeants, laundry operators, 
and salvage collectors as a group account- 
ed for another 25 percent. Relatively few 
were trained as bakers, carpenters, shoe 
repairmen, machinists, operators of fumi- 
gation and bath units, blacksmiths, weld- 

11,5 Memo, Brig Gen IdwaL H. Edwards, ACofS 
G-3, for CG SOS, 26 Jan 43, sub: TrB, 1943, 320.2. 

11)8 Monthly Rpts, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the 
Army, 1943-45. 

107 Rpt, Gen McReynolds, Dir Mil Tng Div, to 
OP&C Div, OQMG, 18 Jan 44, sub: Major Problems 
Confronting the QMC. 

108 Insp Rpt, Maj John F. Guest and Capt James 
R. Adams to TQMG, 15 Jun 45, sub: QM Activities, 


Distribution of Personnel in QMC Units 


QMC Units: 31 December 1944 

Total Units 




Enlisted Men 


Enlisted Men 


3, S02 


162, 384 



Ground force type. . . . 

Service force type _ „ 

Air force type, . 



26, 527 



105, 648 

ers, electricians, draftsmen, and plum- 
bers. 109 

Although the number of Negro units 
never quite equaled that of white units in 
the QMC, Negro enlisted personnel out- 
numbered white enlisted personnel in the 
units by a considerable margin during the 
latter part of the war. As of 3 1 December 
1944, for example, the Corps had 1,815 
white units and 1,687 Negro units, yet the 
enlisted Negroes in the units totaled more 
than 201 ,000 as compared with approxi- 
mately 162,000 enlisted whites. 110 This 
situation is accounted for by the fact that 
that the whites were spread out over a 
much wider variety of units, many of 
which were quite small, whereas the 
Negroes were concentrated in relatively 
few types, most of which were large. 

An analysis of the status on 31 Decem- 
ber 1944, as shown in the 1945 Troop 
Basis, reveals the extent to which Negroes 
were concentrated in specific types of 
QMC units. Of the 841 Negro units of the 
ground force type, 620 were truck com- 
panies and 1 7 were salvage collection com- 
panies. Similarly, of the 713 QMC Negro 
units of the service force type, 394 were 
service units, 60 were hospital laundry 
platoons, 31 were semimobile bakery com- 
panies, 21 were mobile fumigation and 

bath companies, and 18 were salvage re- 
pair companies. The concentration was 
even more pronounced in the air force type 
units, where, of the 133 QMC Negro units, 
130 were truck companies, 2 were truck 
platoons, and 1 was a labor outfit. 

At that time, nearly half of the Corps' 
Negro units were of the ground force 
type — the only type in which there were 
more Negro than white Quartermaster 
units. Despite this, however, the number of 
Negro enlisted men in the service force 
type units was considerably greater than 
in the ground force type, as shown in the 
above table, which indicates that the serv- 
ice force type Negro units were larger than 
the ground force type. 111 


The experience of the QMC in procur- 
ing enlisted men in World War II exempli- 
fied the need for establishing and main- 
taining throughout any future emergency 
a more equitable system of distributing 

,M Rpt, Mil Trig Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres. Pt. 1, Camp Lee Sec, pp. 103-04-. 

See 1945 Troop Basis, 1 January 1945, showing 
actual status of units on 31 December 1944. 

111 Ibid. 



men from civilian life among the various 
branches of the armed forces. As it was, 
many thousands of the better qualified 
men volunteered for service in the Navy, 
the Marine Corps, or the AAF. Hence 
they remained outside the Selective Serv- 
ice System and were never available to the 
Army for distribution. The result was that 
the Navy, the Marine Corps, and the AAF, 
in effect, had the head seat at the man- 
power table. The Army, in turn, operated 
its own priority system in which the QMC 
usually had the lowest rating. Thus the 
QMC was placed more or less in the role 
of a stepchild who sat at the foot of the sec- 
ond table and was forced to take the leav- 

ings after the other branches of the armed 
forces had been treated to the more choice 

This policy no doubt was based on the 
belief that more Quartermaster functions 
could be performed by personnel who were 
inferior physically, mentally, or by reason 
of an underprivileged background, and 
that incidental failures would not imperil, 
to any serious degree, the success of Amer- 
ican arms. The Quartermaster General 
and his staff, keenly aware of actual needs 
in the way of specially skilled, physically 
able, and intelligent personnel, protested 
against .this policy, for the most part to 
little avail. 


The Procurement of 
Quartermaster Officers 

In the earlier American wars, Quarter- 
master officers generally were line officers 
detailed to Quartermaster duties. They 
rarely had any special instruction for the 
particular type of work they were expected 
to do, and usually became qualified for 
their tasks through experience gained on 
the job. It was not until World War I — 
when the Army increased enormously in 
size and Quartermaster activities expand- 
ed proportionately — that officers began to 
be trained as Quartermaster specialists. It 
was then that the Corps, for the first time, 
was permitted to organize units to carry 
out its increasing variety of specialized ac- 
tivities in the field such as salvage collec- 
tion, graves registration, and provision of 
bathing and delousing facilities. Moreover, 
larger-scale operations, extended supply 
lines, and the trend toward mechanization 
and motorization had made warfare itself 
more complex. As a consequence, the 
QMC not only required many more offi- 
cers but also had to establish a program for 
training them as Quartermaster special- 
ists. Furthermore, its operations became so 
highly specialized and diversified that the 
Corps had to turn to private industry for 
men with valuable civilian experience who 
could help to direct its activities and train 
other specialists. This led to the inaugura- 
tion in World War I of the policy of com- 

missioning civilians when they possessed 
the technical skills needed by the QMC. 1 

The problem of procuring Quartermas- 
ter officers was far greater in World War II 
than it had been in 1917-18. In the first 
place, operations were on a much larger 
scale and a greater number of officers was 
needed. More important, however, was 
the fact that the increasing complexity of 
activities — due to such factors as the com- 
plete motorization and mechanization of 
the Army and the development of new 
types of Quartermaster units — had created 
the need for a much wider variety of 

Another reason for the increased diffi- 
culty in procurement was that the Quar- 
termaster officer in World War II had to 
be a combat leader as well as a technical 
specialist. Modern warfare on a global 
scale accounted for this development. In 
World War I the action had been concen- 
trated on a single front that remained 
fairly stable, with the result that the Quar- 
termaster officer was generally able to 
direct supply and service activities in rear 
areas protected by combat troops. In 
World War II, however, the fighting took 

1 See Maj Claude M. Fuess and Gapt Hardin Craig, 
A History of Campjoseph E.Johnston, Jacksonville, 
Florida (2 vols., typ-script, 1919), pp. 210-12, Hist 
Br, OQMG. 



place on many fronts and the lines were 
frequently quite fluid. The rear could be- 
come the front within a few hours, and 
supply lines were often endangered and 
sometimes destroyed by bombers or tanks. 
The Quartermaster officer therefore had 
to be trained in the use of weapons and 
had to possess a knowledge of tactics that 
would enable him to defend his supply 
points. Moreover, he had to possess the 
qualities of leadership needed to direct 
troops in the field. 

At the beginning of the emergency in 
1939 the QMC had approximately 700 
officers, all of whom were professional sol- 
diers. During the war the officer strength 
of the Corps increased by about 30,000 to 
a peak of 30,744 at the end of December 
1944. 2 The QMC acquired additional 
Regular Army officers through transfers 
from other branches, allocations of gradu- 
ates from the U.S. Military Academy, and 
the recall of a few officers who had re- 
signed or retired, but the total number of 
Regular Army officers in the Corps never 
increased to any sizable extent. About one 
fourth of the officers obtained from other 
sources had had some training in peace- 
time military organizations, primarily the 
Officers' Reserve Corps (ORC). Thus ap- 
proximately three fourths of the Quarter- 
master officers procured after 1939 had 
been civilians with no previous military 
training. The great majority of these were 
graduates of the Quartermaster Officer 
Candidate School (OCS), which was 
established late in 1941 to train qualified 
enlisted men. The others were commis- 
sioned directly from civilian life because 
they possessed technical or administrative 
skills that could be utilized even though 
the men had no military experience. 3 

One of the major procurement problems 
was the difficulty encountered in deter- 

mining requirements for officers of all 
types sufficiently in advance to keep the 
supply in balance with the demand. The 
requirements were changing constantly, 
sometimes quickly, with the result that 
there usually was either a shortage or a 
surplus of officers. The most acute shortage 
occurred early in the war when new units 
were being activated so rapidly that it was 
impossible to produce officers fast enough 
to meet the pressing needs for all com- 
ponents of the Corps. This phenomenal 
expansion continued throughout 1942, 
and the OCS operated at full capacity 
while the OQMG resorted to every other 
expedient to procure new officers. In 1943 
the supply finally caught up with require- 
ments during the first half of the year, and 
by September there was even a surplus of 
officers in the QMC. 4 The result was that 
the training of officer candidates, which 
had been tapering off during the last six 
months of 1943, stopped completely for a 
brief interval in December. Unanticipated 
heavy demands for officers arose almost 
immediately, however, and another criti- 
cal shortage developed before the OCS 
operations could be resumed and a suffi- 
cient quantity of new officers could be 
trained to meet the increased require- 
ments. 5 Thereafter the OQMG was more 
successful in gearing its OCS output to the 
fluctuating needs. 

Another major problem was the per- 
sistent shortage of officers in the middle 
grades. Requirements for the top grades — 
generals and colonels — were compara- 

"Monthly Rpt, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the 
Army, 1 Jan 48, p. 16. 
3 See li able 15. | 

1 Ltr, TQMG to CG Camp Lee QMRTC, 28 Sep 
43, sub: Detail of 800 QM Offs to Corps of Engineers. 

5 Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, to CG ASF, 28 
Jan 44, sub: Current and Anticipated Problems Con- 
fronting the QMC. 


Table 15 — Accessions of QMC Officers During World War II ° 


Calendar Years 







29, 577 

14, 787 


3, 172 


Officers' Reserve Corps. _ 

2, 901 





National Guard .. . ... .. .. .. . 





Officer Candidate School 

23, 14S 

10, 482 




Enlisted Men b __ .... ... .. . 






Aviation Cadets 






Warrant or Flight Officers _ . 






Civilian Life and Others c 






* Accessions indicate men who were commissioned in the QMC but who did not necessarily remain there throughout the war. They do 
not include Regular Army officers assigned to the QMC. 

This tabulation does not tell the whole story since two thirds of the ORC and 95 percent of the National Guard had been called intofederal 
service by 1942. As of 31 December 1941, the QMC officer strength included 829 Regular Army officers, 738 National Guard officers, 6,050 
Reserve officers, and 134 AUS officers. See Monthly Rpt, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the Army, 31 Dec 41. 

6 Commissioned directly in the field. 

c Others include former officers of the Regular Army, the National Guard, and the Philippine Army; Naval officers; other ROTC officers; 
and members of the Army Specialist CorpB, Citizen's Military Training CampB, and U. S. citizens transferring from the Canadian Army. 
Source: Rpt, Strength Acctg Br, AGO, to Hist Sec, OQMG, 6 Jul 48, sub: Statistical Data on QMC Commissioned Male OfJa. 

tively small and could be readily met by 
promoting Regular Army and Reserve of- 
ficers. Most of the new officers were second 
lieutenants commissioned by the OCS. In 
peacetime it normally had taken from 
twelve to fifteen years for a second lieuten- 
ant to reach the grade of major or lieuten- 
ant colonel. Although promotions came 
much faster during the war, particularly 
in 1942, it still usually took from twelve 
months to two years for a second lieuten- 
ant to advance to the grade of major or 
lieutenant colonel, and often even to that 
of captain. The rapid expansion of the 
Corps during 1942 and 1943 created a 
heavier demand for officers in the middle 
grades than could be trained in the time 
available. Thus while there was usually an 
abundant supply of junior officers, it was 
late in 1944 before the supply of officers in 
the middle grades began to catch up with 

Procurement Problems in the 
Emergency Period 

It became apparent to the staff of the 
OQMG early in the emergency period 
that the policy laid down by the War 
Department Mobilization Regulations for 
the procurement of Quartermaster officers 
was entirely inadequate for any sizable ex- 
pansion of the Corps. This policy was 
based on the assumption that the ORC 
would be able to supply the bulk of officers 
required by the QMC during the early 
stages of mobilization, and that any addi- 
tional officers needed could be obtained 
through transfer from other branches of 
the Army or through the commissioning of 
civilians possessing the required technical 

The system for procuring Quartermas- 
ter officers proved inadequate from the be- 
ginning because, on the one hand, require- 



ments had been estimated far too low, and 
on the other, the prescribed sources failed 
to produce as many qualified officers as 
had been anticipated. The estimated re- 
quirements fell far short of actual needs 
because they were based primarily on 
World War I experience and failed to take 
into account either the increased complex- 
ity of activities, which created the need for 
more kinds of specialists, or the added 
functions and resultant abnormal load 
that was to be placed upon the QMC dur- 
ing the extended emergency period. 

A shortage of Quartermaster officers 
began to develop as early as the fall of 
1939, soon after the President declared the 
limited national emergency, and became 
serious after the passage of the Selective 
Service Act in 1940. The nature of the 
Corps' functions, which at that time in- 
cluded both construction and transporta- 
tion in addition to supply and service 
responsibilities, caused it to expand faster 
than the Army as a whole. Hundreds of 
new officers were needed quickly to super- 
intend the immense construction program, 
to plan and direct transportation for the 
growing Army, to supervise the handling 
of tremendous stores of food and other sup- 
plies, to direct and train the many truck 
companies and new types of mobile units 
required for a motorized Army, and to 
perform many other Quartermaster 

The original difficulty experienced by 
the QMC in procuring the officers it 
needed arose from the fact that while it 
had more than 6,000 officers in its Reserve 
Corps, many of them were either unquali- 
fied or not immediately available. 6 Some 
of them had been in the ORC since World 
War I and were no longer physically capa- 
ble of full-time duty, others lacked the 
necessary training, and many who had 

been given their commissions in peacetime 
proved to be misfits. 

The Quartermaster Corps has long suffered 
from the fact that many of the Reserve offi- 
cers now commissioned in this Corps are 
totally unfit for the duties they will be called 
upon to perform in mobilization. The re- 
quirements for initial appointments have re- 
cently been raised, and the process of weeding 
out the undesirable officers which is under- 
way will still further increase their shortage 
of available officers. 7 

Moreover, Reserve officers could be 
utilized only when they volunteered. 
Throughout the first year of the emer- 
gency they could not be called to extended 
active duty without their consent, and 
many were unwilling to leave civilian jobs. 
This difficulty was overcome to a large ex- 
tent after Congress in August 1940 author- 
ized the President to order any component 
of the Reserve Corps into active military 
service for twelve consecutive months, and 
a year later extended the period another 
eighteen months. Even then, however, the 
call of some of the Reserve officers was de- 
ferred because they were engaged in essen- 
tial jobs in defense industries. 

The need for Reserve officers in the 
QMC developed so quickly that it was ap- 
parent from the beginning that the supply 
of those who were qualified would be far 
from adequate. In contrast, most of the 
other branches of the Army still had a sur- 
plus of Reserve officers because their need 
for additional officers was not so imme- 
diate. Consequently the War Department 
on 1 November 1939 approved the recom- 
mendation of The Quartermaster General 

" The strength of the QM ORC on 30 June 1940 
was 6,249. See Annual Report of the Secretary of War, 
1940, p. 41. 

7 Memo, ACofS G-l for CofS, 25 Oct 39, sub: Pro- 
curement of QM Reserve Offs, AG 062.12 ORC. 



that initial appointments in the Quarter- 
master Reserve Corps be suspended and 
that vacancies be filled by the transfer of 
qualified officers from other branches in 
which surpluses existed. 8 

This procedure was adopted because the 
QMC had no ROTC or Citizens' Military 
Training Camp units to provide good offi- 
cer material for its Reserve Corps, and the 
transfer of officers from the Reserve units 
of the other Army branches would help to 
reduce their surpluses as well as make 
available to the QMC a source of procure- 
ment that would produce many competent 
officers. Thus the QMC, in its procure- 
ment of Reserve officers, had to depend to 
a considerable extent upon commissioned 
personnel trained originally for other arms 
and services. This helped to ease but did 
not eliminate the shortage of officers in the 
QMC because requirements were increas- 
ing steadily and other branches of the 
Army later began to experience shortages 
of their own. 

The number of Regular Army officers 
in the QMC was relatively small at the be- 
ginning of the emergency primarily be- 
cause for a number of years the Corps had 
not been receiving its proportionate share 
of graduates of the U.S. Military Acad- 
emy. Since 1933 none of the graduates 
had been assigned directly to the QMC. 
War Department policy required that 
they spend at least two years in one of the 
arms to gain experience in the line before 
they became eligible for transfer or detail 
to the QMC. Even then these officers 
could be transferred only upon their own 
request, and, after two years of indoctrina- 
tion in a particular arm, they were gen- 
erally reluctant to make a change." 

Moreover, when the Army began to ex- 
pand, the chiefs of the arms also became 
hard-pressed for commissioned personnel 

and objected to the transfer of officers 
from their branches. Thus the QMC ex- 
perienced difficulty in obtaining its full 
quota of professional officers, particularly 
desirable ones, since nearly all who re- 
quested transfer did so not because of in- 
terest in the QMC but rather because of 
dissatisfaction with their own branches. 
The result was that the number of Regu- 
lar Army officers in the QMC usually was 
inadequate to meet requirements. Fur- 
thermore, since a great many of the offi- 
cers allotted to the QMC had been com- 
missioned in other branches they had no 
Quartermaster training. On 30 June 1940, 
for example, of the 830 officers allotted to 
the QMC, more than 230 were on detail 
from other arms and services. 10 

Col. Edmund B. Gregory, Acting The 
Quartermaster General, protested early in 
1940 that the policy of assigning West 
Point graduates was, in effect, barring 
from the QMC "suitable young men who 
are anxious to join it," because "when 
officers are assigned directly to a combat- 
ant arm they acquire acquaintanceships 
and knowledge which makes them loath 
to leave their surroundings for another 
branch of the service." Although he ad- 
mitted the desirability of assigning pros- 
pective Quartermaster officers to prelimi- 
nary duty with line troops, he contended 
that it was "illogical and wasteful to train 
officers for a number of years as Infantry- 
men, Cavalrymen and Field Artillerymen 
if the remainder of their service is to be in 
the Quartermaster Corps." 11 The short- 
age of officers in the QMC, he said, had 
created a grave situation, and he urged 

_s Ibid. 

" Memo, ACofS G-l for CofS, 6 Feb 40, sub: Pro- 
curement of QM and Ord Offs. 

10 Annual Report of the Secretary of War, 1940, p. 28. 

11 Ltr, Actg TQMG to AGO, 24 Jan 40, sub: Short- 
age of Offs in the QMC. 



that the policy be revised to permit West 
Point graduates, who so desired, to be as- 
signed directly to the Corps. 

The War Department expressed opposi- 
tion at first but finally agreed to the pro- 
posal and announced that, beginning with 
the class of 1940, the QMC would receive 
its pro rata share of the graduates, pro- 
vided they "express a desire for such as- 
signment." Only thirty members of the 
class did so. A year later the War Depart- 
ment eliminated this restriction and au- 
thorized the QMC to receive its full pro 
rata share of the graduates regardless of 
their individual preferences. As a result 
the Corps received sixty-five members, or 
13.41 percent, of the 1941 graduating 
class. 12 

Another handicap faced by the QMC 
in its officer procurement program was 
that the Corps had no ROTC units until 
the fall of 1941. The plan of procuring offi- 
cers through ROTC units in universities 
had been utilized by most of the other 
branches of the Army for many years. The 
War Department, however, had consid- 
ered it unnecessary for the QMC to have 
such units of its own. Instead, corps area 
commanders had been authorized since 
1937 to allot to the QMC up to 5 percent 
of the graduates from units of other 
branches. 13 

This procedure proved far from satisfac- 
tory because graduates who had been 
trained in another ROTC branch rarely 
volunteered to transfer to the QMC, and 
the War Department had instructed corps 
area commanders to make no "extraordi- 
nary effort" to encourage them to do so. 
Consequently the number commissioned 
in the QMC fell far short of the specified 
5 percent, and those who did transfer had 
had no training in Quartermaster func- 
tions. The situation failed to improve to 

any marked degree even after the War De- 
partment modified its policy late in De- 
cember 1940 to the extent of requesting 
that the various ROTC units be canvassed 
for qualified officers willing to accept com- 
missions in the QMC rather than in the 
branch in which they had been trained. 14 

Although earlier attempts to secure ap- 
proval for a Quartermaster ROTC unit 
had been unsuccessful, The Quartermaster 
General revived these efforts in February 
1941 in the belief that the emergency war- 
ranted a change in policy. The War De- 
partment promptly rejected his applica- 
tion. Four months later, however, it re- 
versed its decision and authorized the 
establishment of a unit at the Harvard 
Graduate School of Business Administra- 
tion, provided at least fifty students were 
willing to enroll. 15 Membership was re- 
stricted to graduate students under 
twenty-six years of age who had com- 
pleted ROTC senior division basic courses 
or the equivalent. The number of applica- 
tions far exceeded the maximum quota of 
] 50, making it possible to select those 
with the better qualifications, and since all 
of the applicants were graduate students 
the men selected were of exceptionally 
high caliber. 

The Harvard ROTC Unit was organ- 
ized at the beginning of the school's fall 

12 (1) Ltr, AGO to TQMG et al., 13 Apr 40, sub: 
Procurement of QM and Ord Offs, AG 210.1 ( 1 1—27— 
39) M-A. (2) Memo, ACofSG-1 for CofS, 31 Mar 41, 
sub: Distr and Allotment of RA Offs to Brs, FY 1942. 
This revision was approved by the Chief of Staff on 
14 April 1941. 

13 Ltr, AGO to TQMG et al., 22 Jul 37, sub: Pro- 
curement of QMC Reserve Offs, AG 062.12 ORC 
(4-5-37) Res A. 

14 Ltr, AGO to TQMG et al. , 23 Dec 40, sub: Pro- 
curement of QMC Reserve Offs, AG 062.12 ORC 
(12-5-40) R-A. 

15 (1) Ltr, AGO to TQMG, 27 Feb 41, sub: 
ROTC— Harvard University. (2) Ltr, AGO to First 
C A, 1 2 Jun 4 1 , same sub. 



term in 1941 and had been in operation 
only about three months when the United 
States entered the war. Thus the only offi- 
cers obtained by the QMC through the 
ROTC during the emergency period were 
those assigned to it from units of other 
branches. They were commissioned in the 
Quartermaster Reserve Corps immedi- 
ately following their graduation from col- 
lege, without ever having had any actual 
Army experience or Quartermaster train- 
ing, and it was necessary to give them 
special instruction in QMC functions be- 
fore they were assigned to duty. 

The ROTC officers commissioned in 
the QMC from 1937 through 1940 had 
been so few in number that they had pre- 
sented no serious problem. The situation 
changed in the spring of 1941 when the 
Corps received its first big allotment of 
graduates, approximately 350, all of whom 
were detailed to the Quartermaster School 
at Philadelphia for a special three months' 
course of training. 16 The results of this 
course brought into sharp focus the fallacy 
of commissioning ROTC graduates di- 
rectly from college. Their lack of military 
seasoning proved an initial handicap to 
them in embarking upon careers as offi- 
cers, and, more important, it was discov- 
ered too late that some of them were en- 
tirely unqualified for Quartermaster 

As a group, according to the comman- 
dant of the Quartermaster School in a 
letter to The Quartermaster General on 2 1 
October 1941, they still had an inherent 
civilian outlook and suffered a definite 
shock and temporary maladjustment upon 
entering actual military service. 

The experience of this school had been 
that very few of the ROTC graduates, com- 
missioned directly from college, know any- 
thing whatsoever about military life, customs 

or procedure. Many are too [sic] poor in this 
respect that they do riot even know how to 
dress in a military uniform. It has been 
amazing to all of the faculty members of the 
school to note how prevalent is the thought 
that the act of commissioning is the end, not 
the beginning, of their training, and how 
strong is the conception that they should im- 
mediately step into important administrative, 
executive, and research direction positions. 
It is believed most emphatically by all faculty 
members that the present idea of rotating 
these young men through centers where they 
will learn military fundamentals, team play, 
and obtain contacts with real military life is 
correct, advisable and most necessary. Nearly 
all are strongly individualistic, lack compre- 
hension of moral responsibilities to others, 
and a sense of cooperation and team play. 
They regard formations as something to be 
"cut ' like a college class, and orders are 
something to be analyzed, dissected, criti- 
cized and obeyed only after discussion and 
final individual approval. 17 

Most of the ROTC graduates, largely by 
reason of their educational background, 
were able to overcome their early deficien- 
cies as they acquired additional training 
and experience, and, when finally ori- 
ented, often proved superior to many offi- 
cers obtained from other sources — particu- 
larly those who had had less education. 

When the Army construction program 
was launched in July 1940, the QMC 
needed a large number of officers experi- 
enced in construction work. The Quarter- 
master General requested an immediate 
allotment of 300 Reserve officers to get the 
program under way, but by the time con- 
struction activities were transferred to the 
Corps of Engineers in December 1941 this 

16 Memo, Lt Col Harry M. Andrews, OQMG, for 
ACofS G-l, 29 May 41, sub: Increase in Allotment 
of Reserve Offs. 

" See Rpt, MilTng Div, OQMG, for ASF, School- 
ing of Commissioned Offs (Pts. I, II, and III, and 
App., 1 Jul 39-31 Dec 45, n. d.), Pt. I, pp. 7-8. (Here- 
after cited as Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Com- 
missioned Offs. 



number had increased to include more 
than 1,800 Reserve officers and 150 Regu- 
lar Army officers. 18 To fill this need the 
Corps drew upon its supply of Reserve offi- 
cers, requested and obtained authority 
from the War Department to select quali- 
fied officers from other branches of the 
Army to be detailed to the Corps, and in 
addition found it necessary to commission 
a large number of construction specialists 
directly from civilian life. 

During 1941 the most acute shortage 
experienced by the QMC was in officers 
technically trained in various phases of 
motor transportation. Late in October of 
that year the number of officers assigned 
to motor transport activities totaled fewer 
than 950, while requirements called for 
about 1,500 in field organizations alone. 
Furthermore, less than one third of the 950 
were considered fully qualified. The others 
had to be sent to school for further train- 
ing, thereby increasing the shortage of of- 
ficers available for active duty. The big 
need was for specialists in motor manage- 
ment, fleet operations, automotive repair, 
maintenance, and inspection, as well as 
supply and distribution of spare parts. A 
survey made by the QMC revealed that 
Reserve officers with qualifications in 
these fields were not available in sufficient 
numbers in other branches of the Army to 
alleviate the situation, nor was there time 
to train them. The one source from which 
fully qualified men could be obtained was 
the automotive industry, and The Quar- 
termaster General took steps to obtain 
them by offering commissions in the Army 
of the United States (AUS). His request 
for authority to do this was made to the 
War Department just two days before 
Pearl Harbor. 19 

Commissioning of civilians in the AUS 
had been authorized by the War Depart- 

ment only a month earlier, on 7 Novem- 
ber 1941. Before that time all civilians ap- 
pointed as officers in the QMC directly 
from civilian life had been commissioned 
in the Reserve Corps. The total number 
was 875. 20 Thus one out of about every 
nine officers procured by the QMC during 
the emergency period was appointed di- 
rectly from civilian life. Although civilians 
had been commissioned for many different 
types of Quartermaster duties, particularly 
construction, it was 1942 before they were 
appointed in any sizable number for motor 
transport activities. The ban on passenger- 
car production early in that year resulted 
in unemployment for thousands of special- 
ists of all kinds in the automotive industry 
and simplified the problem of procuring 
qualified officers in that field. Procure- 
ment of motor transport officers, however, 
ceased to be a responsibility of the QMC 
soon after, for the function was trans- 
ferred to the Ordnance Department on 1 
August 1942. 

The QMC experienced considerable 
difficulty in finding a sufficient number of 
officers qualified to command the hun- 
dreds of field units being organized under 
the emergency expansion program. For 
years the Corps had trained most of its 
young officers for duty as post quartermas- 
ters, and only a few had had any field 
training. Participation of Quartermaster 
units in the Army maneuvers in the sum- 
mer of 1941 revealed the omission of field 
training as one of the major weaknesses of 

18 (1) Ltr, TQMG to TAG, 18 Jul 40, sub: Allot- 
ment of Reserve Offs to the QMC, 326.21. (2) Rpt, 
Chief of Constr Div to TQMG, 21 Nov 41, sub: Ac- 
tivities of Constr Div During Period 1 Jul 40-1 Nov 
41, 600.914. 

19 Ltr, TQMG to TAG, 5 Dec 41, sub: Allotment of 
OfFs for Appointment in the AUS. 

20 Data obtained by OQMG historian from Offs 
Sec, Pers Div, OQMG, circa Dec 42. 



the QMC training program. Consequently 
steps were taken to revise the courses of in- 
struction and to devote more attention to 
field training, but it was months before the 
full effects of the new training program 
were felt in the units. Another limiting fac- 
tor was that many of the officers were 
over-age for duty with units. 21 

War Department policy required The 
Quartermaster General to assign as many 
of his Regular Army officers as possible to 
units. It was then the responsibility of the 
corps area commanders to provide the re- 
mainder of the officer complement for the 
units from their allotments of Reserve of- 
ficers. The number who qualified for such 
assignment, however, was so small that the 
War Department in the fall of 1941 estab- 
lished a rotation system whereby all Quar- 
termaster Reserve officers of company 
grade were to complete a course of instruc- 
tion at the Quartermaster School and 
another at one of the QMRTC's before 
being assigned to units. The objectives 
were to provide better-trained officers for 
units and to replace troop-age officers on 
duty at permanent installations with those 
who were over-age or otherwise unquali- 
fied for field service. 22 

The summer of 1941 was a critical pe- 
riod in Quartermaster officer procure- 
ment. The need for commissioned person- 
nel was increasing while the supply of 
qualified Reserve officers was running 
low, with more than 4,000 already on ex- 
tended active duty in the QMC. Reserves 
of the other branches of the Army had 
been quite thoroughly combed for special- 
ists who could be utilized to carry out 
Quartermaster functions. Moreover, the 
federalization of the National Guard had 
begun in September 1940, and by the 
summer of 1941 this additional source of 
Quartermaster officers was about ex- 

hausted. The Corps faced a grave situ- 
ation, even thgugh its officer strength had 
grown to 5,675 by 30 June 1941, as shown 
in the following table: 23 

Component QMC Officers 

Total 5,675 

Regular Army 904 

Reserve 4,013 

National Guard 758 

Adding to the seriousness of the situa- 
tion was the fact that the twelve-month 
period of service authorized by Congress 
for National Guard and Reserve officers 
was nearing an end, and at that time there 
had been no assurance that the period 
would be extended. The procurement ob- 
jective late in July 1941 called for approxi- 
mately 1 1,800 officers in the QMC, where- 
as the allotment of Regular Army officers 
was only 945, and the available supply of 
Reserve officers was estimated at about 
7,000, leaving a potential over-all shortage 
of nearly 4,000 officers. In an attempt to 
help fill this big gap, The Quartermaster 
General appealed to the War Department 
to raise the allotment of Regular Army of- 
ficers to 1,371, an increase of more than 
45 percent. He proposed that the addi- 
tional 426 officers be detailed from the 
other arms and services "in grades of 
Major, Captain, and First Lieutenant . . . 
to fill the vacancies of one grade higher in 

Col James C. Longino, "A Few Observations on 
the Third Army Maneuvers," QMR, XXI (January- 
February, 1942), 19-20. 

22 (1) Lt f , AGO to CGs of All OAs 17 Feb 41, 
sub: Reserve Off Overstrength for Existing RA Units. 
AG 320.2 (1-16-41) M-A-M. (2) Ltr, AGO to CGs 
of QMRTCs. Comdt of the QM School et al., 14 Oct 
41, sub: Attendance of Reserve Offs at the QM School 
to Provide Loss Repls, FY 1942, AG 320.2 (9-26-41) 

23 Annual Report of the Secretary of War , 1941 , p. 95. 



each case and thus allow for promo- 
tion." 24 

His recommendation was rejected on 
the grounds that this action would grant 
"preferential treatment" to the QMC at 
the expense of the other arms and services, 
particularly the arms, and because the 
War Department considered that the 
Corps, "by nature of its duties, is better 
able to utilize the service of Reserve offi- 
cers, whose training in civil life more 
nearly approximates the duties in that 
service, than can combat units." 28 

Meanwhile, with the principal sources 
of officers threatening to run dry, The 
Quartermaster General finally gained per- 
mission to operate an officer candidate 
school for the training of selected enlisted 
men. Early in January 1941 the War De- 
partment had announced that it would set 
up OCS programs in the Infantry, Caval- 
ry, Field Artillery, and Coast Artillery, but 
that it did not contemplate any such train- 
ing program in the QMC because it still 
believed that officer requirements of the 
Corps could be met through the utilization 
of Reserve officers, transfers of unassigned 
officers from other branches, and the com- 
missioning of civilians. About three 
months later, when the general shortage of 
officers throughout the Army convinced 
the War Department of the need for ex- 
tending the training program, it an- 
nounced that OCS plans were being 
revised to include schools for the QMC 
and the other services. 26 

The Quartermaster OCS was finally es- 
tablished on 7 July 1941. The original 
quota for the QMC classes was set at 150, 
and enrollment was restricted primarily to 
enlisted men and warrant officers who had 
been in the service at least six months. 
Two of these classes were begun before 
Pearl Harbor, but there was time to grad- 

uate only one group of 1 35 new officers be- 
fore the country was at war. 

The Critical Officer Shortage of 1942 

The most critical shortage of Quarter- 
master officers occurred in the six-month 
period following the attack upon Pearl 
Harbor. Quartermaster recruits, who had 
averaged fewer than 8,000 a month in 
1941, began pouring into the QMRTC's 
at the rate of more than 25,000 a month. 
Many additional officers were needed to 
train them. Similarly, more officers were 
in demand to supervise the transportation 
of the rapidly expanding Army, and to di- 
rect the procurement and distribution of 
greatly increased quantities of food and 
other supplies. The most acute need was 
for company-grade officers of troop age to 
command the many new units being or- 

The heavy demand for field units and 
officers to command them was the most 
significant change brought about in the 
QMC by the sudden transition from peace 
to war: 

. . . the functions of the Quartermaster 
Corps are fundamentally the same in peace 
and in war. When on maneuvers the Quar- 
termaster Corps is the only Corps whose men 
do not have to simulate training. They actually 
perform the same functions they would in 

24 Memo, TQMG for GofS, 29 Jul 41, sub: Short- 
ages of RA Offs, QMC, and Inch Ltr, Lt Col Wilbur 
R. McReynolds, OQMG, to AGO, 18Jul41,sub: 
Offs' Peacetime Procurement Objective for Mobiliza- 
tion, 320.2. 

25 (1) Ltr, AGO to TQMG, 23 Aug 41, sub: In- 
crease in Allotment or RA Offs, QMC, AG 320.2 
(7-29-41) OP-A. (2) Memo, ACofS G-l for CofS, 11 
Aug 41, same sub. 

2(5 (1) Ltr, AGO to CGs, Armies, CAs, and Depts, 
15Jan41,sub:OCS. (2) 1st Ind, AGO to TQMG, 17 
Feb 41, on Ltr, TQMG to AGO, 25 Jan 41, sub: OCS. 
(3) Ltr, AGO to CGs, Armies, Depts, and CAs, 21 
Apr 41, sub: OCS. 



combat. The only difference Pearl Harbor 
and the war have made in the Quartermas- 
ter Corps was to enlarge the numbers of those 
engaged in field-type work. It does not 
change the fundamental functions which the 
Corps must perform and for which officers 
must be trained. Supply functions are basi- 
cally the same, whether they are performed 
in a depot or in a field installation. . . . 
although we are at war the Quartermaster 
Corps has not thrown away its subsistence 
and its clothing and taken up a rifle. 27 

Difficulties encountered during the 
emergency period in procuring an ade- 
quate number of officers for units mounted 
in 1942 in proportion to the increase in the 
rate of mobilization. The rotation policy 
established late in 1941 had been designed 
to overcome the shortage by channeling 
all company-grade officers of troop age to 
field units, but this objective was never 
fully attained. One of the reasons was that 
there were not enough over-age and lim- 
ited-service officers to take over the duties 
being performed by troop-age officers at 
permanent installations, and those holding 
key positions could not be relieved for field 
duty when no replacements were avail- 
able. Another reason was that many of the 
troop-age officers, particularly those com- 
missioned directly from civilian life, were 
found to be unsuited for assignment to 
troops. Because an officer was of troop age, 
it did not necessarily follow that he was of 
troop type. 28 

The transfer of qualified troop-age offi- 
cers to field units increased the shortage of 
commissioned personnel at Quartermas- 
ter installations where requirements were 
also increasing sharply. The experience of 
the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot in 
January 1942 was typical. The depot had 
70 officers, and the commander put in a 
request for an increase to 128, which he 
said was a conservative estimate of his 
needs. Instead of getting the additional 58 

officers, however, he lost some of those he 

We recently received a radiogram from 
your office that five of the seventy [officers] 
we now have are to be transferred immedi- 
ately and five more as of February 1st; and, 
from all indications, we stand to lose more 
and more as time goes on. This Depot has re- 
ceived no definite assurance of any sort re- 
garding replacements for officers already lost 
or for the ten we are about to lose; much less, 
for the difference of fifty-eight between the 
seventy we have and the one hundred and 
twenty-eight required. 29 

The officer shortage at the depots and 
other Quartermaster installations was re- 
lieved to some extent after the OQMG in 
February 1942 requested and obtained 
permission to utilize 1 ,060 branch imma- 
terial Reserve officers who had not yet 
been assigned to extended active duty in 
their own branches. 30 In approving the re- 
quest, the War Department restricted the 
selection to over-age Reserve officers of the 
Infantry, Cavalry, and Field Artillery on 
an inactive status. Many of these over-age 
officers, after they had undergone training 
in specific Quartermaster duties, were able 
to replace troop-age officers and make 
them available for field units. 31 

Despite frantic efforts to obtain addi- 
tional officers from all other possible 
sources — assigning Reserve officers, com- 
missioning enlisted men and civilians, and 

27 Ltr, Col Horace L. Whittaker, Comdt QM 
School, to Gen Scowden. 19 Mar 42, sub: Comments 
on Rpt of Professors Smith and Mace, 353. 

2S 1st Lt William O. Antozzi to Chief of Tng Br, 
Mil Pers and Tng Div, OQMG, 10 Jun 42, sub: Rpt 
of Tng Co nf, 9Jun42. 

29 Ltr, CG PQMG to TQMG, 15 Jan 42, sub: Tng 
Troop- Age Offs for the Fid Forces, 353.02. 

30 Branch immaterial is the term applied to com- 
missioned officers not assigned to any particular arm 
or service. 

31 (1) Ltr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to TAG, 
18 Feb 42, sub: Allotment of Offs. (2) Memo. ACofS 
G-l for TAG, 20 Feb 42, same sub. 



calling retired officers back to duty — 
shortages increased rather than dimin- 
ished throughout the first half of 1942, 
when the Corps expanded more rapidly 
than at any other time during the war. 
The growth in officer strength of the QMC 
during those six months failed by far to 
keep pace with the increase in enlisted 
personnel. Although the latter expanded 
from approximately 1 15,000 to 215,000, 
the number of officers rose from 7,800 to 
only about 12,400, and most of that in- 
crease occurred during May and June. 32 
It was obvious that the officer shortages 
could never be overcome until the OCS 
could train a sufficient number of quali- 
fied enlisted men. 

The Role of the Officer Candidate School 

It was from the enlisted ranks that the 
QMC obtained the great portion of its 
new officers during the war years. About 
1,400 were commissioned in the field on 
the basis of their experience. But the 
bulk— more than 23,000 of the nearly 30,- 
000 officers obtained from all sources — 
were graduates of the OCS who were com- 
missioned as second lieutenants. Most of 
these were inductees who were enrolled in 
the OCS after completing their basic 
training. Only 5,000 new officers acquired 
in 1942 and thereafter came from all other 
sources, including the ORC, specialists 
commissioned directly from civilian life, 
and form er officers recalled to duty. (See 
[Table 1 5, j 

Enrollment at the Quartermaster OCS 
early in 1942 increased as rapidly as facil- 
ities could be expanded. The first wartime 
class, begun late in January, comprised 
about 500 candidates — more than three 
times as many as had been enrolled in 
either of the two classes started in 1941. 

By April the quota for each new class had 
been established at 1,200. In all, fifteen 
Quartermaster OCS classes were started 
in 1942 and nearly 10,500 graduates were 
commissioned. This number was approxi- 
mately equal to the total number gradu- 
ated in the following three years. 33 

Some difficulty was experienced at first 
in finding enough suitable candidates to 
fill the sharply increased OCS quotas. One 
of the major reasons was that there was a 
limited number of men in the QMC under 
the maximum age of thirty-six, who were 
mentally and physically qualified and had 
been in the service long enough to be eli- 
gible. Many more men became available 
after February 1942 when the War De- 
partment raised the age limit to forty-six, 
and reduced to three months the length of 
time in service required for eligibility. 34 
Another reason for the difficulty was that 
many potential candidates who were oc- 
cupying relatively important key positions 
in units and installations were hampered 
in their efforts to enroll in the OCS by the 
lack of co-operation on the part of their 
commanding officers who did not want to 
lose them. Reports indicated that the 
policy being pursued by the commanders 
was to let the men seek admission to the 
OCS on their own initiative without offer- 
ing them any encouragement. This situa- 
tion led to a War Department directive 
making commanders in all echelons re- 
sponsible for seeing that every qualified 
enlisted man was afforded an opportunity 

12 Unpublished rpt of Secretary of War, 1942, App. 
B, Table D, in Strength Accounting Br, AGO. 

: " (1) Ltr, TQMG to TAG, 22 Jan 42, sub: QM 
Augmentation Plan, 352.01. (2) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG, for ASF, Tng of Off Candidates (Pts. I, II, 
and HI, and App., 1 Jul 39-3 1 Dec 44, n. d.), Pt. I. 
pp. 7-15. (Hereafter cited as Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng 
of OffCandidates.) 

31 WD Cir 48, Sec. II, 19 Feb 42, sub: OCS. 



and encouraged to apply for entrance to 
an OCS. 35 

With the elimination of these early dif- 
ficulties, the QMC had no further trouble 
in filling its OCS quotas during the mobi- 
lization period. In fact, a surplus of candi- 
dates developed as early as April 1942, 
and the War Department suggested that 
men on the waiting list be given an oppor- 
tunity to enroll in schools of other branches 
that still had serious shortages. 36 Conse- 
quently the QMC had little if any need for 
the Volunteer Officer Candidate (VOC) 
plan that had been adopted by the War 
Department in March 1942 to open up a 
new source of officer material — men de- 
ferred because they had dependents. This 
plan permitted any qualified man who 
had been deferred from the draft for de- 
pendency only to volunteer for officer 
training, with the understanding that if he 
was not selected at the replacement train- 
ing center to which he was sent for basic 
training, or if he was not commissioned at 
an OCS, he could return to civilian life 
and his former draft status. The Camp Lee 
QMRTC reported to the War Depart- 
ment in July 1942 that no more than 10 
percent of the 600 VOC's it had on hand 
could possibly be selected for officer train- 
ing under the existing OCS quota, and re- 
quested either that fewer VOC's be sent or 
that the OCS quota be increased so that 
more of them could be utilized. The out- 
come was that the War Department issued 
orders in August that no more VOC's 
were to be accepted at the Quartermaster 
OCS. 37 

Although the primary objective of the 
OCS was to produce officers for field units, 
not all of the graduates could qualify for 
such assignments, chiefly because of age 
restrictions. For example, the maximum 
age at first for second lieutenants on duty 

with units was twenty-eight, yet many of 
the men were past thirty-five upon gradu- 
ation, and some were as old as forty-five. 
Many of the older graduates were so far 
over-age in grade that they could never 
qualify for field duty. They could, how- 
ever, be assigned to zone of interior instal- 
lations where they could relieve troop-age 
officers for field duty. Those who were 
over-age as second lieutenants but still 
young enough to become eligible for troop 
duty at a higher grade were given ad- 
vanced training so that they could qualify 
for promotion. 

The time required for this additional 
training and the fact that requirements 
were mounting rapidly through most of 
1942 were among the principal reasons 
why it took so long to overcome the short- 
age of officers, despite the sharply in- 
creased output of the OCS. Paradoxically, 
the OCS itself helped to increase the 
shortage because it had to have such a 
large staff to provide supervision and in- 
struction for the expanded program, and 
outstanding students from some of the 
earlier classes had to be retained as in- 
structors instead of being sent to the field. 38 

By the fall of 1942 the most pressing 
needs for Quartermaster officers finally 
were being met and the OCS began to un- 
dergo drastic changes. Seeking to prevent 
a surplus of officers, the War Department 
reduced the quota for each new Quarter- 
master class from 1,200 to 600 beginning 
in October, and then to 300 effective in 

35 Ltr, AGO to CofS GHQet al., 2 7 Jan 42, sub: 
Selection of Candidates for OCS. 

n6 Ltr, AGO to All Commanders, 6 Apr 42, sub: Off 
Candidates, Tech Brs. 

57 (1) Rad, CG Camp Lee QMRTC to TAG, 27 
Jul 42, sub: VOC. (2) AGO Memo W350-65-42, 11 
Aug 42, same sub. 

38 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. I, 
p. 49. 



May 1943. 39 Moreover, it directed in Oc- 
tober 1942 that no enlisted men under 
thirty-five years of age were to be enrolled 
in the Quartermaster OCS unless they 
were disqualified for general service. 40 The 
purpose of this directive was to channel 
more candidates to the combat arms, 
which were still having serious difficulty in 
filling their quotas. In effect, enrollment 
in the Quartermaster OCS was restricted 
to limited-service and over-age personnel. 
The OCS staff, which had begun to pay 
closer attention to the qualifications of 
candidates because of the sharply reduced 
quotas, protested to the AGO that assign- 
ment of limited-service personnel to the 
Quartermaster OCS was in violation of 
Army Regulations. The AGO acknowl- 
edged this and beginning in February 
1943 specified that only candidates classi- 
fied for general service could be assigned 
to the Quartermaster OCS. 41 

The relaxation of pressure for new offi- 
cers permitted the OCS to devote more at- 
tention to the quality of graduates. Previ- 
ously, volume and speed had been of 
utmost importance because requirements 
were immediate. It had become a rather 
common practice to commission indi- 
viduals in advance of graduation, particu- 
larly if they had had any previous military 
experience, in order to meet the urgent 
need for officers, and two entire OCS 
classes with a combined enrollment of 
more than 2,400 candidates had been 
commissioned two weeks ahead of sched- 
ule after only eleven weeks of training. 
Moreover, in the rush to produce the re- 
quired number of new officers, many 
candidates of questionable suitability were 
enrolled and graduated. This situation be- 
gan to change late in 1942 when standards 
for admission and graduation were raised. 

An indication that the efforts to improve 

the quality of OCS graduates proved suc- 
cessful was the fact that the percentage of 
candidates who failed to win their com- 
missions increased greatly in 1943 and 
thereafter. During 1941 and 1942 the 
number of failures had been very small — 
fewer than 6 percent. This number in- 
creased to more than 18 percent in 1943, 
while failures of from 30 to 40 percent 
were the rule rather than the exception in 
1944 and the first half of 1945. 4 2 Although 
the general caliber of enlisted men tended 
to decline as the war progressed, the fact 
that there was a more careful selection of 
candidates leads to the conclusion that the 
greater' percentage of failures after 1942 
was due more to the raising of standards 
than to any other factor. 

Another important change in the OCS 
program was brought about by the deci- 
sion of the War Department in March 
1943 to train ROTC graduates within the 
quotas set for the OCS, instead of in addi- 
tion to them as in the past. Summer camps 
had been discontinued for the duration of 
the war, and during 1942 Quartermaster 
ROTC graduates who had completed all 
requirements for a commission except at- 
tendance at summer camps had been 
given a basic course of training at the 
Quartermaster School before being com- 
missioned as second lieutenants. Under 
the revised procedure of March 1943, the 
Quartermaster OCS began to train the 
ROTC graduates along with the regular 

M (1) AGO Memo W350-74-42, 5 Sep 42, sub: 
Quotas for QM OCS. (2) Ltr, AGO to All Command- 
ers to Whom Quotas Are Allotted, 24 Mar 43, same 
sub, AG 352 (3-19-43) OB-D-SPGAO. 

411 WD Cir 358, Sec. II, 28 Oct 42, sub: OCS. 

41 (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. 
I, p. 22. (2) Ltr, AGO to AH Commanders to Whom 
Quotas Are Allotted, 27 Feb 43, sub: Quotas for QM 
OCS, AG 352 (2-22-43) OB-D-SPQTA. 

42 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. II, 
pp. 21-22. 



candidates. The ROTC graduates were 
much younger, of course, than the other 
candidates whose minimum age was 

The QMC had obtained permission 
during the first half of 1942 to establish 
eight additional ROTC units, making a 
total of nine including the one at Harvard 
University, and the former procedure of 
assigning 5 percent of the graduates from 
ROTC units of the other arms and services 
had been discontinued. 43 The Quarter- 
master ROTC program proved to be of 
rather short duration. At the end of 1942 
the War Department placed the student 
trainees in all senior ROTC units under 
the control of the newly established Army 
Specialized Training Program (ASTP). In 
June 1943, at the end of the 1942-43 
academic year, all ROTC units were sus- 
pended for the duration of the war. 44 

The ASTP came into being because the 
lowering of the draft age from twenty to 
eighteen made it virtually impossible for 
colleges and universities to continue to 
supply cadets for the ROTC. The new 
program was designed to insure a con- 
tinuous replenishment in later war years of 
technically trained officer material. It pro- 
vided that selected enlisted men were to be 
assigned to civilian institutions of higher 
learning for academic instruction in 
courses of military value, such as science, 
engineering, or medicine, but only after 
they had received basic military training, 
which was to be continued under a cadet 
organization while they were in college. 

The QMC participation in the ASTP 
was quite limited. No Quartermaster per- 
sonnel — other than the ROTC students 
included originally — were selected for 
ASTP training during the first seven 
months that the program was in operation. 
Finally, however, in August 1943, the War 

Department made provisions whereby 
men assigned to the QMC "who were pre- 
viously pursuing courses in business ad- 
ministration and allied subjects required 
by the ROTC-QMC program" could be 
recommended for ASTP training. 45 About 
six months later the War Department re- 
duced the number of ASTP trainees in the 
entire Army from 150,000 to 30,000, and 
announced that ROTC students would be 
eliminated from the program effective 
1 April 1944. 46 

The effect of the decision to train 
ROTC students within the OCS quota 
was that ROTC personnel began to fill the 
quotas to the exclusion of other candidates 
about the middle of 1943, when the size of 
the OCS classes was sharply reduced. The 
Quartermaster General called the atten- 
tion of ASF headquarters to this situation 
in November 1943. He pointed out that 
many high-grade officer candidates, in- 
cluding some men returned from overseas, 
had been selected and were being held in 
pools awaiting an opportunity to get into 
the OCS but that there was no way to 
enroll them because ROTC students 
would fill all available quotas until July 
1944. He proposed that the surplus candi- 
dates be permitted to attend the OCS 
inasmuch as facilities and instructors were 
still available. His idea was to commission 
them in the Reserve Corps following 

* 3 (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Pt. I, pp. 1-12. (2) Rpt, Maj Ross W. Mayer to 
Col Wilbur R. McReynolds, OQMG, 1 1 Feb 42, sub: 
ROTC Summer Camps and Other Matters. (3) For 
location of the nine Quartermaster ROTC units, dates 
of establis hment, and nu mber of graduates from each, 
see helnw lp. 264.~n~2R] 

"AGO Memo W145-4-42, 23 Dec 42, sub: 
ASTP— ROTC Instructions. 

4S AGO Memo W145-12-43, par. 4, 4 Aug 43, sub: 
Disp of First- Year Advanced Course ROTC Students. 

*" Ltr, ACofS G-l to CG ASF, 16 Feb 44, sub: Re- 
duction in ASTP. 



graduation, place them on the inactive 
list, then assign them to positions of re- 
sponsibility as noncommissioned officers in 
the theaters of operations. There they 
could be called to active duty as second 
lieutenants as the need arose. He expressed 
the opinion that the men deserved "the 
democratic chance to attain at least the 
opportunity for officer training." 47 

This proposal was rejected by the Di- 
rector of Personnel, ASF, who contended 
that to train an individual as an officer 
and then force him to continue to serve in 
a noncommissioned status "would be in- 
advisable and have as harmful an effect on 
morale as the present limited number of 
opportunities to attend officer candidate 
school." Moreover, he added, the capac- 
ities of the OCS had been adjusted to meet 
all current and future requirements for 
officers, and that to increase these capac- 
ities "to train additional men who will 
probably never have the opportunity to 
serve as officers during the war" could not 
be justified. 48 

The assumption in January 1944 that 
the OCS was operating at a level sufficient 
to meet future requirements proved to be 
entirely fallacious. As a matter of fact, 
even before The Quartermaster General 
received the reply to his proposal the 
Corps was again faced with a critical 
shortage of officers. Sudden unexpected 
demands from overseas for more Quarter- 
master officers not only wiped out the sur- 
plus of officers, which had been a matter 
of concern in 1943, but made it necessary 
to expand sharply the capacity of the OCS 
in order to produce 3,000 more graduates 
than it had been geared to turn out in 
1944 under the old schedule. Since fewer 
than 500 ROTC graduates were available 
toward the new goal, about 2,500 candi- 
dates would have to come from other 

sources. 49 Thus the problem was no longer 
what to do about the men who had been 
crowded out of the OCS by ROTC per- 
sonnel, but rather where to get the addi- 
tional candidates needed to meet the in- 
creased requirements. 

The difficulty in filling the suddenly in- 
creased OCS quotas in 1944 was due pri- 
marily to the fact that the number of men 
still in the zone of interior who were quali- 
fied to enroll was comparatively small. 
Most of the general-service personnel who 
could be made available for overseas duty 
had already been sent abroad. It became 
necessary to bring some of them back and 
enroll them in the OCS in order to fulfill 
the requirements. Before the end of 1944 
the supply of qualified candidates had be- 
come so small that the quota had to be re- 
duced, and for nearly three months begin- 
ning early in November no new classes 
were started because the QMC was un- 
able to obtain a sufficient number of suit- 
able candidates. 50 During the first half of 
1945 the situation became so acute that 
the QMC resorted to reviewing applica- 
tions of men who had been rejected from 
the OCS's of other branches of the service 
"on the theory that if rejected for technical 
reasons only, the applicants may be ac- 
ceptable for the Quartermaster Corps." 51 
One of the serious results of the desperate 
search for officer candidates was that the 

47 Memo, TQMG for CG ASF, 26 Nov 43, sub: 
Use of OCS for Reserve Off Tng. 

48 1st Ind, Dirof Pers, ASF, to TQMG, 26 Jan 44, 
on memo cited n. 47. 

49 (1) Ltr, Gen Wilbur R. McReynolds, OQMG, to 
Dir of Mil Tng Div, ASF, 17 Jan 44, sub: Increase in 
QM Off Candidate Classes. (2) Memo, Dir of Mil 
Tng Div, ASF, for TQMG, 24 Jan 44, same sub. 

50 Ltr, Col Wolfe, Dir of Mil Tng Div, OQMG, to 
Col Lawrence L. Cobb, Comdt of QM School, 20 Nov 
44, no sub. 

51 [1st Ind], Col Hastings, OQMG, to TAG, 27 
Mar 45. 



best sources of good noncommissioned of- 
ficers for Quartermaster units were largely 
depleted in the attempt to fill the OCS 

The acute shortage of OCS candidates 
led to the granting of authority to theater 
commanders late in 1944 to commission in 
the field enlisted men whose experience 
and leadership qualities entitled them to 
promotion. During 1945 approximately 
800 Quartermaster enlisted men received 
their commissions in this manner without 
any formal training as officers. This was 
nearly as many as were graduated from 
the Quartermaster OCS during the same 
period. 52 

Undoubtedly the operations of the OCS 
would have followed a different pattern 
had it been possible for the War Depart- 
ment to determine further in advancejust 
what would be needed to win a global 
war. Quotas would not have been reduced 
so sharply as they were in 1943, and thus 
the officer shortage of 1944 and 1945 
might have been avoided. In the light of 
developments as the war progressed and 
all of the theaters went into action, the so- 
called officer surplus of 1943 actually was 
not a surplus at all. It is true that there 
were more Quartermaster officers in 1943 
than were called for in the Troop Basis, 
but, as it turned out, the Troop Basis 
underestimated requirements. Theater 
commanders complained almost constant- 
ly that they were not getting a sufficient 
number of Quartermaster officers or men, 
even when they were receiving the full 
quotas assigned to them. Moreover, they 
complained that some of the officers were 
not well qualified and that many had not 
had sufficient training. 53 

The primary reason why many of the 
Quartermaster officers were inexperienced 
upon arrival in the theaters was that most 

of them were graduates of the OCS who, 
because the need for officers usually was 
urgent and immediate, frequently had to 
be sent overseas before they had had an 
opportunity for additional training. The 
OCS was not designed to turn out special- 
ists. Its mission was "to equip candidates 
with the basic knowledge needed to begin 
their careers as second lieutenants." 54 
Thus the candidates merely acquired the 
background for specialization in the par- 
ticular fields to which they were assigned 
after graduation. The general procedure 
was to send the graduates directly to the 
Quartermaster School or to depots for this 
specialized training. Often, however, the 
need for officers was so urgent that the 
OCS graduates had to get the additional 
training after they arrived overseas. Dur- 
ing the rapid mobilization in 1942, when 
so many new units were being activated 
and pressure was great from all directions, 
there was not sufficient time to give com- 
pletely adequate training to either officers 
or men before they were sent to the thea- 
ters. A somewhat similar situation devel- 
oped on a smaller scale in 1944 when 
requirements for overseas replacements 
suddenly were found to be much greater 
than had been anticipated. 

It could hardly be expected that all 
graduates of the OCS would become 
thoroughly qualified and competent 
Quartermaster officers, even after addi- 

52 (1) Ltr, Dir of Mil Tng Div, OQMG, to Comdt 
of QM School, 28 Nov 44, sub: OCS Class No. 49. 
(2) See fl'able 157| 

"For some examples of complaints see (1) Memo, 
CQM ETO to DQMG,27 Jun 43, sub: Qualifications 
of QM Offs Assigned to ETO; (2) Ltr, CQM 
USASOS SWPA to TQMG, 1 Jul 43, no sub; (3) Ltr, 
CQM ETO to CG Advance Sec ComZ, 5 Jan 45, no 
sub; and (4) OCQM USASOS SWPA, Mil History, 
QM Sec, USASOS, 7 Dec 4 1-30 Jun 45 (7 vols.), V, 
55-56, and VI, 53. 

S4 ASF Manual M3, Nov 44, p. 69. 



tional training and experience. Candidates 
varied widely as to their educational back- 
ground, occupational experience, and 
mental capacity. Many who were obvi- 
ously unqualified were screened out, but 
among those who received their commis- 
sions there was a great difference in ability 
and proficiency. Many of the men had 
been experts in their civilian occupations 
but had never had any military training, 
and while some of these could readily 
adapt themselves to Army life, others 
found it difficult to do so. A candidate 
such as a petroleum engineer or a certified 
public accountant could possess a high 
degree of skill and still lack leadership 
ability or other qualities necessary to make 
him a good officer. On the other hand, 
some of the candidates who had been non- 
commissioned officers with extensive Army 
training and good military bearing pos- 
sessed no particular skills to make them 
useful as Quartermaster officers. Still 
others were just out of school and had 
neither civilian occupational experience 
nor previous military training. 

As in the case of enlisted personnel, the 
skills possessed by the graduates did not 
occur in direct proportion to the needs of 
the QMC, which were complicated by the 
wide variety of functions the Corps had to 
perform. The problem was to try to fill all 
of these requirements at a given time with 
the particular types of officers then avail- 
able. This resulted in officers being as- 
signed to jobs for which they were not par- 
ticularly qualified. 

The Commissioning of Civilians 

In the rapid expansion of the QMC fol- 
lowing Pearl Harbor, a critical shortage of 
qualified officers developed in such fields 
as motor supply and maintenance, laun- 

dry operations, refrigeration, salvage col- 
lection, shoe and textile repair, bakery, 
and sales commissary. The needs were im- 
mediate and technicians could not be 
trained quickly enough in sufficient num- 
bers to meet the urgent requirements. It 
was necessary, therefore, to commission 
competent civilians who, if they were not 
qualified to serve with units, could at least 
relieve experienced officers for duty in the 

Civilians up to sixty years of age could 
be commissioned in the Army of the 
United States, even though they had no 
previous military experience, provided 
they possessed the special technical, ad- 
ministrative, or scientific ability needed by 
the Army. All appointments were subject 
to approval by the War Department. The 
various arms and services were required to 
submit procurement objectives along with 
explanations of why the men were needed, 
and allotments were made on that basis. 
During most of 1942 regulations prohib- 
ited the commissioning from civilian life of 
men under thirty years of age without pre- 
vious commissioned service, unless they 
possessed extraordinary professional or 
technical qualifications. The minimum 
age restriction was raised to thirty-five in 
November, and no men between thirty- 
five and forty-five without previous com- 
missioned service could be appointed if 
they were in selective service Class I-A or 
II. The maximum age for men in these 
groups was lowered automatically in De- 
cember from forty-five to thirty-eight 
when the Army stopped drafting men 
thirty-eight and over. Civilian appointees 
were assigned originally to overhead in- 
stallations where they served under Regu- 
lar Army officers. Regulations provided at 
first that they had to be in active service at 
least six months before they could be as- 



signed to duty with field units. This provi- 
sion was changed later to four months. 
Civilians with minor physical defects that 
would have disqualified them for perma- 
nent rank in the Regular Army could be 
commissioned in the AUS because their 
assignments generally were of a limited- 
service nature. 55 

Until late in 1942 the Military Person- 
nel and Training Division, OQMG, had 
the responsibility for obtaining and proc- 
essing applications of civilians and making 
recommendations for their appointment 
as officers in the QMC. Although the divi- 
sion was literally swamped by applications 
from civilians, it found that comparatively 
few of them possessed the necessary quali- 
fications. For example, the biggest need 
was for men experienced in motor trans- 
port activities, such as specialists in motor 
repair, maintenance, inspection, and fleet 
operations, yet most of the men who ap- 
plied from the automobile industry had 
been salesmen without any technical ex- 
perience. Approximately 90,000 applica- 
tions were received during the first six 
months of 1942, but only 1,832 applicants 
were recommended for appointment, and 
the number actually commissioned was 
1,066, including 629 in the motor trans- 
port service. This number was far short of 
the QMC procurement objective, which 
had been set at 1,840 for the first half of 
1942. 56 

The OQMG estimated about the mid- 
dle of 1942 that it would require 1,860 of- 
ficers from civilian life during the second 
half of the year. 57 Actually, less than half 
of that number were commissioned. One 
of the reasons for this was that motor trans- 
port activities, for which most of the civil- 
ians were being appointed, had been 
transferred to the Ordnance Department. 
Another reason was that most of the re- 

quirements for Quartermaster officers 
were being met by the fall of 1942 as a re- 
sult of the heavy output of the OCS, and 
there were fears that a surplus of officers 
would develop. Still another factor was the 
confusion over civilian appointments that 
grew out of the creation of the Army Spe- 
cialist Corps (ASC). 

The ASC was established by Executive 
order on 26 February 1942. This new 
corps was created in the belief that it 
would be able to supply all branches of the 
Army and other War Department agencies 
with professional, scientific, and adminis- 
trative personnel who could not readily 
qualify for commissions in the AUS, and 
thus relieve many additional officers for 
duty in the theaters. These civilian experts 
were to be recruited through the Civil 
Service Commission but would have 
neither civil-service status nor Army com- 
missions. They were to wear uniforms 
similar to those of the Army but with dis- 
tinctive insignia. They were to exercise 
administrative and supervisory functions 
only, but would have authority over any 
Army personnel assigned to duty under 
them. 58 

The OQMG had high hopes that the 
ASC would provide the QMC with a large 

- (1) WD Cir 37, 29 Jan 42, sub: Appointment of 
Commissioned Offs in the AUS, Changes in AR 605- 
10. (2) Ltr, TAG to TQMG el al., 7 Jan 42, sub: 
Waiving of Physical Defects of Limited Sv Offs of the 
Sup Arms and Svs, AG 210.31 (12-19-41) RP-A. (3) 
AR 605-10, 30 Dec 42. sub: Offs Appointed in the 

56 (1) Data submitted bv Pers and Tng Div for An- 
nual Rpt of TQMG to SOS for FY 1942, 12 Aug 42. 
(2) Ltr, Lt Col Roy C. Moore, OQMG, to TAG, 3 Jul 
42, sub: Procurement Objective, 210.1. (3) Memo for 
Files, Maj W. F. Hell man, OQMG, 2 1 Jul 42, sub: 
Mil Pers. 

517 Ltr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to TAG, 20 
Jul 42, sub: Forecast of Off Reqmts, 1 Jul-3 1 Dec 42, 

OQMG OO 1 1 1 , 24 May 42, sub: ASC. 



number of specialists who would help to 
relieve the shortage of officers, but some 
uncertainty existed as to just how they 
would fit into the organization. 

It is evident that the Army Specialist 
Corps is being organized to be able to place 
in uniform a great many prominent civilians 
who are unable, at the present time, to get by 
the surgeons and also to provide a corps of 
specialists who do not come under the Civil 
Service Regulations nor the present per diem 
method of securing experience in certain 
fields of endeavor. No doubt a great many 
civilian experts who are at the present time 
hired as civilians could be transferred to this 
organization, in which they would have ad- 
ministrative and supervisory control over 
military personnel, which fact is not always 
the case at present. In other words, instead of 
their positions being advisory in nature, their 
positions under the Army Specialist Corps 
would be, more or less, in a chain of com- 
mand. 59 

The program got under way in May 
1942 when The Adjutant General author- 
ized the QMC to recommend the appoint- 
ment of 1,493 civilians as officers in the 
ASC. 60 In keeping with the new War De- 
partment policy, the director of the Mili- 
tary Personnel and Training Division, 
OQMG, announced that all future ap- 
pointments of civilians would be made, 
"in practically all cases," in the ASC 
rather than in the AUS. S1 Despite this, 
considerable reluctance to make ASC ap- 
pointment developed on the part of pro- 
curement officers in the QMC and 
throughout the Army. The fact that the 
ASC officers would be neither flesh nor 
fowl raised serious questions as to the de- 
gree of authority they could assert over 
Army personnel. Then, too, the QMC 
was allotted a specific number of officers 
in each grade, and any appointments 
made in the ASC automatically reduced 
the number of existing vacancies and re- 

stricted the opportunities for promoting 
AUS officers. Moreover, the procedure 
for procuring officers for the ASC was 
none too clear, and misunderstandings 
arose with the Civil Service Commission 
through which ASC officers had to be ob- 
tained. The upshot was that procurement 
machinery slowed down, and QMC pro- 
curement officers, in their eagerness to re- 
lieve the shortage of officers, continued to 
make the bulk of their appointments in the 
AUS. This tendency was so prevalent 
among the arms and services that the War 
Department in September attempted to 
clarify the mission of the ASC and to curb 
the practice. 

It is apparent that many officers have been 
appointed in the Army of the United States 
who should have been appointed in the Army 
Specialist Corps. It is believed that this is due 
to a lack of understanding of the mission of 
the Army Specialist Corps and the procedure 
necessary to secure an appointment in the 
Corps [ASC]. Steps are now being taken to 
eliminate the unnecessary and objectionable 
processes in order that the appointments may 
be expedited. 6 - 

A few weeks later, however, the War 
Department abandoned its unsuccessful 
experiment with the ASC. It announced 
on 4 November 1942 that the ASC was be- 
ing abolished, that effective immediately 
no more appointments were to be made in 
it, and that officers who had been ap- 
pointed would be permitted to apply for 
commissions in the AUS. Those who failed 
to submit their applications on or before 

^ Memo, Col David H. Cowles to TQMG, 27 Apr 
42, sub: ACS Appointments, 210.1. 

eo Ltr, TAG to TQMG, 14 May 42, sub: Procure- 
ment Objective, ASC, AG 231.2 (5-4-42) RE-SPGA. 

61 Brig Gen Munnikhuysen to Dir of Motor Trans- 
port Sv, OQMG, 28 May 42, sub: ASC Appointments, 

62 AGO Memo W900-5-42, 28 Sep 42, sub: Ap- 
pointments in the ASC. 



1 December 1942 would be discharged on 
31 December. In the QMC only ninety- 
eight civilians had been appointed to com- 
missioned grades in the ASC during the 
eight months that the agency had been in 
existence. Of these, eighty qualified for 
and were given commissions in the AUS. 63 

At the same time that it abolished the 
ASC, the War Department put a stop to 
inter-service competition among the AGF, 
the AAF, and the SOS by centralizing pro- 
curement in one agency. This agency — 
the Officer Procurement Service — was 
given the sole responsibility for procuring 
all candidates for commissions in the AUS 
except aviation cadets and graduates of 
the OCS and the ROTC. Under the old 
competitive system the AAF had held a 
decided advantage over the technical 
services and the AGF because it was able 
to offer commissions in higher grades to 
civilian specialists. By centralizing pro- 
curement and adopting standard proce- 
dures the War Department eliminated 
this practice and also improved the gen- 
eral quality of the appointees. 64 

The War Department had made an at- 
tempt late in 1941 to centralize procure- 
ment when it authorized the establishment 
of the Personnel Placement Agency, with 
branches in the corps areas, to receive, ac- 
knowledge, register, and classify informa- 
tion pertaining to individuals possessing 
skills, who might be utilized by the Army 
either as officers or as civilian employees. 
The QMC and the other arms and serv- 
ices, however, had already set up their 
own procurement organizations and made 
little use of the Personnel Placement 
Agency, primarily because the War De- 
partment had made no adequate provision 
for coding skills and professions and the 
AGO lacked specific knowledge of officer 
requirements. 65 

One of the outstanding weaknesses of 
the competitive procurement system in ef- 
fect throughout most of 1943 was that 
there was no provision for an exchange of 
applications among the various branches 
of the Army. For example, a civilian spe- 
cialist who could be utilized immediately 
by the QMC might apply for a commis- 
sion in one of the other services that had 
no need at the time for his particular type 
of skill. Thus his application would be 
placed in the inactive file without any 
knowledge on the part of the QMC that 
he was available. The lack of centralized 
control resulted in confusion on the part 
of both the applicants and the procure- 
ment officers, inefficiency, and waste of 
time, effort, and manpower. 

Although the original War Department 
effort at centralization had failed, the SOS 
sought to overcome the weaknesses of the 
competitive system within its own organi- 
zation by centralizing procurement for the 
technical services. In May 1942 it estab- 
lished the Procurement Branch in the Mil- 
itary Personnel Division, SOS. This 
branch was made responsible for super- 
vising and co-ordinating all activities re- 
lating to the commissioning of officers in 
the AUS, except from the OCS, and for 
co-ordinating procurement of personnel 
for appointment in the ASC. Although the 
Procurement Branch was transferred to 

63 (1) AGO Memo W900-6-42, 4 Nov 42, sub: Ap- 
pointments in the ASC. (2) Capt H. W. Druehl to Col 
Whitehead, OQMG, 13 Jan 43, sub: Annual Rpt. The 
98 officers commissioned in the ASC included 1 colo- 
nel, 18 majors, 37 captains, 32 first lieutenants, and 
10 second lieutenants. 

6J (1) WD Cir 367, 7 Nov 42, sub: Off Procurement 
Sv. (2) Statement, Lt Col H. L. Swift, Chief of Pro- 
curement Br, Mil Pers Div, SOS, at conf, 1 1 Jun 42, 
sub: Plans for Commissioning of Specialists and Offs 
in the AUS. 

65 Hist Rpt, Off Procurement Sv, ASF, 30 Apr 45, 
Off Procurement During World War II, pp. 2-3. 



the AGO shortly thereafter, it continued 
to function as the operating agency for the 
SOS in all matters pertaining to procure- 
ment of officers from civilian life, and field 
offices were set up to assist in recruiting the 
types of specialists needed. Chiefs of the 
technical services were called upon to sub- 
mit specifications covering officer require- 
ments, and the branch consolidated these 
into job specifications to expedite procure- 

The final step toward centralization 
within the SOS was taken on 1 September 
1942 when the commanding general of the 
SOS ordered that all officer procurement 
agencies operating within a service com- 
mand, including those of the ASC, be 
combined under the commanding general 
of the service command. The new system, 
however, did not become effective imme- 
diately. The QMC and the other technical 
services were permitted to continue proc- 
essing the applications they had on file, 
and the old system was integrated gradu- 
ally with the new procedure. Thus the 
SOS centralization program was scarcely 
in full operation when the War Depart- 
ment in November created the Officer 
Procurement Service and made it solely 
responsible for the commissioning of civil- 
ians in all branches of the Army. 66 

Unfortunately, the Navy had a more 
liberal policy than did the Army in the 
matter of commissioning civilians, with 
the result that the OQMG lost many of its 
civilian technicians to the Navy during the 
early part of the war. The Quartermaster 
General became quite annoyed when he 
had to stand helplessly by while the Navy 
repeatedly commissioned men from his 
own office whose applications had been re- 
jected by the War Department when he 
had attempted to appoint them to the 
Corps. 67 

During the past year [1943] the Navy has 

commissioned many of our technical person- 
nel and have thus deprived the War Depart- 
ment of their needed services. These men of 
draft age are anxious to be in uniform and re- 
sent the uncertainty of renewed deferments. 
It has been impossible to commission them in 
the Army, yet the Navy has acknowledged 
their valuable training by giving them com- 
missions. 88 

Following the establishment of the Offi- 
cer Procurement Service the War Depart- 
ment revised its policies and tightened re- 
strictions on appointments from civilian 
life. There were two reasons for this. One 
was that nearly all officer requirements, 
except in special categories, were being 
met through the increased output of the 
OCS's. The other was that the War De- 
partment had been embarrassed by the 
fact that some of the civilian appointees 
were found to be wholly unqualified for 
their jobs. The new policy stipulated that 
future requirements would be met to the 
maximum extent possible by better utili- 
zation of officers already in the service, by 
the training of these officers for advance- 
ment to positions of greater responsibility, 
and by the assignment of OCS graduates. 
Appointments from civilian life were to be 
limited to the necessary procurement of of- 
ficers with technical or special skills not 
found in the Army, OCS, or service 
schools. HS 

66 (l)SOS, Mil PersDiv Memo 30, 18 May 42, sub: 
Orgn. (2) Memo, AGO for Dir of Mil Pers, SOS, 18 
Jun 42. sub: Plan for Establishment and Opn of the 
Off Procurement Br, Extract SPX 320.2 (7-17-42) 
RJ. (3) AGO Memo S605-5-42, ] Sep 42, sub: Off 
Procurement. (4) AGO Memo S605- 1 6-42, 31 Oct 
42, same sub. 

67 Interv, OQMG Historian with Lt Gen Edmund 
B. Gregory, USA (ret.), 19 Jun 50. 

68 Memo, Gen Feldman, OQMG, for CG ASF, 28 
Jan 44, sub: Check List of Current Problems, 321. 

69 (1) SW Memo, 12 Nov 42, sub: Policies Govern- 
ing Appointment of Offs. (2) Memo, DCofS for CG 
SOS, 18 Dec 42, sub: Appointment of Offs from Civil 



The number of civilians commissioned 
in the QMC declined sharply after this 
new policy became effective. Late in No- 
vember 1942 the OQMG had estimated 
that it would require 1,378 officers from 
civilian life in 1943. Three months later, 
however, the procurement objective was 
lowered to 250. Actually, only about 170 
civilians were commissioned during the 
year. A large portion of these were men 
with extensive industrial experience in the 
procurement, storage, and distribution of 
petroleum products. Quartermaster Corps 
procurement of civilians all but stopped 
after 1943, only forty-one being appointed 
in 1944, and less than a dozen in 1945. 
One of the reasons for the decrease in 
civilian appointments was that the QMC 
was able to find many of the specialists it 
needed within its own ranks or elsewhere 
in the Army. Beginning in 1943 and there- 
after more commissions were granted by 
the Corps to enlisted men, warrant offi- 
cers, and aviation cadets than to civilians. 70 

Classification and Assignment 

At the beginning of the war Army offi- 
cers were classified into three broad cate- 
gories — command, staff, and specialist. 
This system was not refined enough for the 
highly specialized positions that had to be 
filled, in that it merely designated the type 
of work for which an officer might be 
suited rather than the specific job for 
which he was best fitted. This weakness 
came to light early in the mobilization pe- 
riod when so many civilians were being 
converted into officers and it became im- 
perative to take full advantage of their 
civilian experience and to utilize them 
where they could perform the greatest 
service with the least additional training. 

The War Department adopted a more 
practical system for classifying commis- 

sioned personnel and warrant officers in 
May 1942 in an effort " to obtain the max- 
imum use of their skills, abilities, and ex- 
perience." 71 Under this plan, the civilian 
occupations of the officers were converted 
into the nearest equivalent military jobs or 
specialties by means of a numerical code 
and titles similar to those used in classify- 
ing enlisted personnel. It was eight months 
after the new system was announced, how- 
ever, before the job classification was pub- 
lished. 72 In the meantime, officers re- 
mained unclassified as to their military 
specialties, although sometimes the most 
appropriate MOS and title of enlisted 
men were used. All officers below the 
grade of general officer were subject to 
classification, and commanders who had 
jurisdiction over assignments were respon- 
sible for classifying the officers under 
them. Graduates of the OCS, the ROTC, 
and the U.S. Military Academy were clas- 
sified before being commissioned. 

The officer's education, military experi- 
ence, hobbies, as well as other related data 
were taken into consideration along with 
his civilian occupation in making the clas- 
sification. This information was obtained 
in an interview, usually conducted by a 
commissioned personnel technician, and 
was recorded on the officer's qualification 
card. The card accompanied the officer on 
each change of station and was revised as 
he acquired additional training and ex- 

On the basis of their classification, offi- 
cers were assigned to jobs corresponding as 

70 (l)'Ltr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to TAG, 
25 Nov 42, sub: Estimated Off Reqmts from Civil Life 
in QMC for 1943, 210.1. (2) Ltr, Actg TQMG to CG 
SOS, 17 Feb 43, sub: Procurement Obje ctive for Ap - 
pointments from Civil Life, 210.1. (3) See [Table 151 

71 AR 605-90, 21 May 42, sub: Off s and Warrant 
Offs Classification. 

72 (1) AR 605-95, 19 Jan 43, sub: Offjob Classifi- 
cation. (2) Supplement to same, IB Mar 43. 



closely as possible to their civilian occupa- 
tions. In order to fill requirements in 
scarce categories, however, it was fre- 
quently necessary to assign them to types 
of work in which they had had compara- 
tively less experience. For this reason, they 
were classified as to both their main and 
their secondary occupations. 

Inasmuch as the classification system 
was not infallible, officers were sometimes 
assigned to jobs for which they were not 
qualified and had to be reclassified. More- 
over, quite a few officers who proved en- 
tirely proficient in their original assign- 
ments were later reported as unsatisfactory 
after being promoted and transferred to 
new assignments. The OQMG called at- 
tention to this situation in the spring of 
1943, when it suggested that officers at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC be rotated in order 
to give them the widest experience possible 
while in training, and warned against pro- 
motions being "so rapid as to result in 
placing officers in positions of major re- 
sponsibility before they are equipped by 
training and experience to successfully 
carry these responsibilities." The OQMG 
also pointed out: 

Frequent instances have come to the atten- 
tion of this office in which an exceptionally 
promising officer suddenly is reported as un- 
satisfactory. His record shows a series of ex- 
cellent or superior efficiency reports and 
promotions at close intervals. Then, closely 
following a promotion and transfer to a new 
assignment, an unsatisfactory report is re- 
ceived and even on occasion a recommenda- 
tion for reclassification. Most frequently these 
adverse reports appear in cases where promo- 
tion to field grade has been rapid. In the typ- 
ical instance, it also usually appears that the 
officer's duties have been largely confined to 
one type assignment during his service in the 
junior grades. The conclusion is that an in- 
telligent, basically well-equipped officer has 
been kept on one assignment in which he has 
become exceptionally proficient, and that his 

training in other types of duties has been neg- 
lected to the extent that he reaches field 
grade lacking in knowledge of the broader 
aspects of the Quartermaster Corps so essen- 
tial to efficient performance of duty in the 
higher grades. Obviously, this practice is not 
only an injustice to the officer concerned but 
also reveals a failure to make the best use of 
the personnel available. 73 

Officers were classified not only by their 
specialties, but also according to age, as 
troop age or over-age in grade, and ac- 
cording to physical capacity, as limited 
service or general service. Army Regula- 
tions restricted the appointment of limi- 
ted-service officers to fields in which there 
were scarcities of professionally qualified 
men, and at first they could be assigned 
only to overhead positions in the War De- 
partment or in the corps areas. Beginning 
early in 1944, however, they were permit- 
ted to go overseas if their defects were 
"static in nature and not subject to the de- 
velopment of complications." 74 

The Quartermaster General had the re- 
sponsibility for assigning and reassigning 
the officers under his control and for filling 
requisitions submitted by all commands to 
the AGO. His office checked each requisi- 
tion for accuracy, made the decision as to 
whether all or part of it could be filled, 
specified the number and grades of officers 
to be furnished, and then redelegated au- 
thority to the commanding generals of the 
QMRTC's to select the required number 
of qualified officers in the available grades 
and to issue the orders for their transfer. 75 

™ Ltr, Col Whitehead, OQMG, to CG Camp Lee 
QMRTC, 21 May 43, sub: Promotion of Offs. 

7+ (1) Ltr, TAG to TQMG et al, 7 Jan 42, sub: 
Waiving of Physical Defects for Limited Sv Offs in 
the Sup Arms and Svs, AG 210.31 (12-19-4-1) RP-A. 
(2) WD Cir 102, 1 1 Mar 44, sub: Physical Standards 
for Oversea Assignment of Offs. 

75 Ltr, Gen Munnikhuyscn, OQMG, to CG Camp 
Lee QMRTC, 30 Mar 42, sub: Assignment of Offs, 



Operation of the Officer Pool 

Unassigned officers were placed in the 
Quartermaster replacement pool. An offi- 
cer replacement pool had been established 
in each of the arms and services in Decem- 
ber 1941 shortly after Pearl Harbor, and 
the system was widely used throughout the 
war. Officers were assigned to the pool 
either when no assignment was available 
for them or when they were not available 
for assignment for any reason, such as be- 
ing in a hospital or awaiting discharge. 
Newly commissioned officers were sent to 
the pool unless it was necessary to assign 
them immediately to duty in a unit or at 
an installation. The purpose of the pool 
was to give suitable preparatory training 
to each officer before his permanent as- 
signment and to serve as the primary 
source of officers for the activation of new 
units and for overseas assignments. Regu- 
lations specified that all officers in the pool 
were to be kept in readiness for permanent 
duty and that they could not be employed 
on operating jobs while awaiting assign- 
ment. The pool was also utilized in rotat- 
ing officers qualified for troop duty who 
were serving in zone of interior installa- 
tions and had never had any field training. 
Before being shipped overseas, such offi- 
cers were transferred to the pool and given 
appropriate training for duty with a truck 
company, a bakery outfit, or some other 
field unit. 76 

Quartermaster pools were operated at 
the QMRTC's, the Quartermaster School, 
and at the various depots and other Quar- 
termaster installations where specialized 
training was conducted. Early in the war 
the pool was comprised primarily of Re- 
serve officers ordered to active duty, grad- 
uates of the OCS, personnel commissioned 
directly from civilian life, and officers se- 

lected to attend various service schools for 
advanced training. The composition 
changed considerably late in the war when 
many officers returned from overseas un- 
der the War Department rotation plan 
were sent to the pool for redeployment 
training and reassignment. 

The size of the Quartermaster pool 
varied widely in accordance with the fluc- 
tuating relationship between the supply of 
officers and the requirements for them. 
During the acute officer shortage of 1942 
the number in the pool usually averaged 
between 200 and 300. Late in 1942, how- 
ever, it suddenly increased to approxi- 
mately 1,000 when the supply of officers 
became more plentiful. During the officer 
surplus of 1943 the average number in the 
pool was about 1,500, although at one 
time there were more than 3,700. The size 
of the pool declined sharply to about 500 
during the officer shortage in 1944. 77 

Officers of all ranks up through that of 
colonel were assigned to the pool, but the 
great majority were second lieutenants, 
most of whom were sent there directly 
from the OCS. The length of stay in the 
pool varied greatly. Sometimes an officer 
could complete a particular type of train- 
ing in about a month and then, before 
leaving the pool, could spend another week 
or so observing operations of a unit or in- 
stallation of the kind to which he was as- 
signed. In many instances, however, the 
need for officers was so urgent that they 
were assigned to duty before they could 
complete any training. On the other hand, 

7B Ltr, TAG to TQMG et al., 19 Dec 41, sub: Off 
Filler and Loss Repls for Ground Arms and Svs, AG 
321.2 (12-15-41) OP-A-M. 

17 (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commis- 
sioned. Offs, Repl Pool Sec, Chart I, facing p, 54. (2) 
Ltr. Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to CG ASF, 24 Jan 
44, sub: Off Repl Pool, 210.21. 



officers occasionally remained in the pool 
as long as six months. The average length 
of time spent there, however, was less than 
two months. 78 

Graduates of the OCS generally were 
processed through the pool except when 
the shortage of officers made it necessary 
to assign them directly to units or installa- 
tions, as was the case during much of 1942. 
They were assigned to training in the pool 
in accordance with quotas established by 
the OQMG, which designated the num- 
ber to be given advanced training in each 
technical field, such as motor transport, 
bakers and cooks, administration, depot, 
laundry, salvage, refrigeration, and sterili- 
zation and bath. However, before the 
graduate was assigned to a specific type of 
training, the usual procedure was to inter- 
view him personally and permit him to ex- 
press a preference, which was given as 
much consideration as possible in the light 
of his particular qualifications and the ex- 
isting requirements. The personal contact 
established through this interview tended 
to give the new officer the feeling of being 
treated as an individual and sent him into 
his training with more enthusiasm than if 
he were simply handed an order specifying 
the type of training he would receive. The 
pool's practical training course afforded 
an opportunity to determine the best qual- 
ifications of each officer and thus provided 
a sound basis for his ultimate assignment. 
Consequently there was less opportunity 
for improper assignment than in the case 
of the OCS graduates, who were assigned 
directly to field or tactical units on the 
basis of their academic records alone. 79 

Throughout the greater part of the war 
the commanding general of the Camp Lee 
QMRTC, who supervised the pool, was 
permitted to transfer officers freely back 

and forth between the pool and the center 
cadre and to fill requisitions and other re- 
quirements for officers either from the pool 
or from the cadre as he saw fit. He was in 
a position to ascertain quickly the qualifi- 
cations and status of all officers available 
for assignment and could fill urgent re- 
quests for those with special skills by tele- 
phone. He sent copies of all transfer orders 
to The Quartermaster General and sub- 
mitted weekly strength reports showing 
the status of all officers available in the 

This system of decentralized operation 
was abandoned temporarily in February 
1943. The pool had grown so large that 
the Personnel Division, OQMG, decided 
that it should exercise a greater degree of 
control. Consequently a directive was is- 
sued prohibiting transfers to and from the 
pool except when approved by the divi- 
sion. The procedure of making all assign- 
ments from the OQMG level ran into dif- 
ficulty primarily because the Personnel 
Division possessed no up-to-the-minute 
information on the status of officers in the 
pool. Frequently the officers who were as- 
signed proved to be unavailable because 
they were in the hospital, on emergency 
leave, or on temporary duty elsewhere. 
This created much confusion, involved a 
a considerable amount of long-distance 
telephoning, and required extensive sub- 
stitutions. The commanding general of the 
Camp Lee QMRTC found the procedure 
highly unsatisfactory and protested "that 
you can't control the movements of indi- 
vidual officers by long distance telephone." 
The outcome was that the original system 

7H Rpt, Schooling of Commissioned Offs, Repl Pool 
Sec, p. 57. 

79 Ibid., pp. 49, 52. 



of operation was reinstated in the summer 
of 1943. 80 

During the early part of the war there 
was a marked tendency on the part of 
commanders in the QMC to transfer to 
the pool any officers they wanted to get rid 
of for one reason or another, and to use the 
pool assignment as a punishment or as a 
threat of punishment. This created a 
rather general impression that the pool 
was merely a dumping ground and that an 
assignment there constituted a black mark 
on an officer's record. Actually, of course, 
many excellent and superior officers were 
sent to the pool for additional training or 
in preparation for an anticipated assign- 
ment. The abuse of pool assignments by 
commanders was finally stopped when 
The Quartermaster General directed that 
only his headquarters would issue orders 
assigning officers to the pool. 81 

Another shortcoming of the pool was the 
generally low morale among the officers 
assigned to it. This resulted primarily 
from the fact that, having no assignment, 
officers were inclined to feel that they 
were wasting their time, were contributing 
nothing toward winning the war, and were 
losing out on an opportunity for promo- 
tion. Experienced officers of higher rank 
often looked upon assignment to the pool 
as a form of degradation. 

Officers assigned to the pool varied 
greatly as to their capabilities. Those of 
top quality were usually the first to get as- 
signments and normally stayed in the pool 
a comparatively short time, while those of 
poorer quality tended to remain there. The 
ASF notified the OQMG early in January 
1944 that The Inspector General had 
found the condition of the Quartermaster 
pool unsatisfactory. The major criticisms 
were that the pool was becoming filled 

with "the least qualified if not actually un- 
satisfactory officers" and that pool officers 
were being used on operating jobs in lieu of 
being assigned within existing ceilings. 
The ASF directed that prompt measures 
be taken to separate from active duty any 
unsatisfactory or surplus officers in the 
pool. 82 

The OQMG, in reply, admitted that 
the condition of the pool "for a period of a 
few months during 1943" had not been 
"entirely satisfactory." The difficulty, it 
stated, had been caused by the excessive 
size of the pool, which had created a hous- 
ing shortage that could be resolved only 
by placing the pool officers in the installa- 
tions where housing was obtainable, with- 
out consideration as to the appropriate 
number at any particular installation. The 
Inspector General's investigation, the 
OQMG pointed out, had been made 
when the pool was near its peak during 
that period. Since then, it declared, the 
size of the pool had been reduced from 
nearly 3,800 to 1,245, the situation had 
"vastly changed," and if another investi- 
gation were made it would reveal an "en- 
tirely satisfactory" condition. The OQMG 
stated further that the greatest care was 
being exercised "to prevent the accumula- 
tion of unsatisfactory, or barely satisfac- 
tory officers." 83 

90 (1) Ltr, Gen Munnikhuyscn, OQMG, to CG 
QMRTC, 17 Feb 43, sub: Transfer of Offs from Pool 
to Cadre. (2) Ltr, Brig Gen Guy I. Rowe, CG Camp 
Lee QMRTC, to Gen Barnes, Deputy TQMG, 3 Jun 
43, sub: Difficulty in Pers Control of Pool Offs. (3) Ltr, 
TQMG to CG Camp Lee, 10 Sep 43, sub: Commis- 
sioned Off Reqmts in the Camp Lee QMRTC, 

81 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Repl Pool Sec, p. 8. 

82 Ltr, Maj Gen Joseph N. Dalton, Dirof Pers, ASF, 
to TQMG, 8 Jan 44, sub: Off Repl Pools. 

6:1 Ltr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to CG ASF, 
24 Jan 44, sub: Off Repl Pools. 


Table 16 — Separations of Quartermaster Commissioned Officers ° 

Calendar Year 







Grand Total 

6, 334 




4, 127 

Killed in Action 


/ JA 


( l ) 



Died of Wounds . . 



( 6 ) 

( 4 ) 


T\» J I1FI »1 » M* * k " T"li 1 t ITT 

Died While Missing m Action or Prisoner of War . - 






Declared Dead _ . . 






Total _ ... . 





Accident, Aircraft - 






i ' J ^ XT *. A 1 . f . 






Died of Disease __ „____„_ . 






Other Deaths _ 

. 26 





lULdl _ 



J I 





Retired . . 






Resigned. _ 











Demobilization _ _ 



War Department Circular 290 c , 



Physical Disqualifications _ . - . . - 






Dishonorable Discharge _ . . . 






Discharged Other Than Honorably. ... . 






Other Causes r . . 







5, 894 





" Figures in this table represent men who were separated while in the QMC but who did not necessarily serve there throughout the 
war. Separations do not include Regular Army officers assigned to the QMC. 

• Figures audited as of 30 June 1946 and not available separately by month or year. 

e Release essential to national health, safety, or interest; or because of undue hardship or over-age. 

Source: Rpt, Strength Accounting Br, AGO, to Hist Sec, OQMG, 6 Jul 48, sub; Statistical Data on QMC Commissioned Male Offis. 

The order to rid the pool of unsatisfac- 
tory and surplus officers was one of the 
reasons for a sharp increase in the number 
of officers discharged from the QMC. 
Another was an ASF directive issued in 
the fall of 1 944 that only officers who could 
qualify for overseas service were to be kept 
in the pool, unless they were being trained 
for specific installations such as depots, or 
inspection agencies. 84 More than 500 
Quartermaster officers were separated 
from the service for physical disabilities 
alone in 1944. All told, 1,200 officers were 
discharged by the QMC in 1944, in con- 

trast to only 500 in 1 943. In 1 945 about 
1,300 more were discharged in addition to 
the 2,800 who were demobilized. (See 
Table 16.) 

Officers for Negro Troops 

While the total peak officer strength of 
the QMC was nearly 31,000, the number 
of Negro officers was only 700. Thus while 
Negroes comprised nearly half of the en- 
listed men in the Corps, Negro officers 

84 ASF Cir 413, Sec. II, 20 Sep 44, sub: Off Repl 



were outnumbered nearly 45 to 1. As late 
as 31 December 1944, when the Negro of- 
ficer and enlisted strength of the Corps 
was at its peak, only 1 Negro out of 324 in 
the QMC was an officer, as compared 
with 1 in 47 in the Infantry, 1 in 49 in the 
Field Artillery, and 1 in 79 in the Air 
Corps. The proportions were higher also 
in the other technical services except the 
Corps of Engineers and the Transportation 
Corps, where the ratio was 1 in 341 and 1 
in 503, respectively. 85 

The primary reason why such a small 
percentage of Negroes in the QMC be- 
came officers was that comparatively few 
enlisted Negroes were in the AGCT 
Grades I and II. Inasmuch as the AAF 
had top priority on Negroes as well as 
whites in the higher brackets of intelli- 
gence, many of those who were eligible to 
become officers were drained off at the 
reception centers and never became avail- 
able to the QMC. Moreover, the AGF had 
first call on all men with previous military 
training as well as those who displayed 
qualities of leadership. These priorities 
severely restricted the supply of good 
Negro officer material in the QMC. An- 
other factor was that there were no Negro 
officers in the Corps during the emergency 
period, and after Pearl Harbor the pro- 
gram for enrolling enlisted Negroes in the 
OCS was slow in getting under way. Only 
four Negroes were graduated from the 
Quartermaster OCS during the first six 
months of 1942. The situation changed 
radically in the second half of the year 
when approximately 300 were enrolled 
and most of them received commissions. 86 
When the OCS program was cut back 
sharply late in 1942 and early in 1943 be- 
cause the over-all requirements for officers 
in the QMC were being met, quotas for 
Negroes were reduced along with those for 

whites. Even then considerable difficulty 
was experienced in finding enough suit- 
able Negro officer candidates. 87 

Virtually all of the Negro officers in the 
QMC were either graduates of the Quar- 
termaster OCS, or had come to the Corps 
through transfer from other branches of 
the Army. Comparatively few of them ad- 
vanced beyond the rank of captain. One 
of the reasons for this was that they were 
assigned to small units where the oppor- 
tunity for promotion was quite limited. 
Another was that they normally were as- 
signed directly from the OCS to units and 
their training and experience usually was 
in only one type of duty with the field 
forces. Thus they did not get the varied 
depot training that was necessary to pro- 
duce well-rounded Quartermaster officers 
and essential for promotion to the higher 
grades. Moreover, the Troop Basis placed 
restrictions on the positions that were 
available to Negro officers. 

Except for the small number he was per- 
mitted to assign to the permanent training 
regiments at the Camp Lee QMRTC, The 
Quartermaster General had no direct con- 
trol over the assignment of Negro officers. 
They could be assigned only to such units 
and agencies and in such grades as author- 
ized by the War Department. The OQMG 
notified the AGO when new officers be- 
came available for assignment and some- 
times made recommendations as to their 
use, but the decision as to their utilization 
rested with the General Staff. The War 
Department delegated authority to The 
Quartermaster General early in 1944 to 

85 Computed by author from Monthly Rpt, AGO 
to WDGS, Strength of the Army, 1 Jan 45, pp. 16, 

sr> Data obtained from Mil Tng Div, OQMG. 

87 Ltr, CG Camp Lee QMRTC to TQMG, 12 Jan 
43, sub: Reduction in Available OlY Candidate Ma- 



assign Negro officers to any units or instal- 
lations under his control that were com- 
prised of Negro enlisted personnel. In 
effect, however, this gave him control over 
the assignment of only ten officers, all of 
whom were attached to the training units 
at the Camp Lee QMRTC. 88 

The need for Negro officers in Negro 
units exceeded the number available for 
the positions allocated in the Troop Basis 
by such a wide margin that few were ever 
assigned to jobs other than those in units 
and the training centers. 89 During the 
early part of the war Negro officers in the 
QMC were assigned only to truck units 
and service companies. Later the War De- 
partment, on the recommendation of the 
OQMG, altered its policy to permit as- 
signment to some other types of units, in- 
cluding car and railhead companies and 
gas supply battalions, but most of the 
Quartermaster Negro officers continued to 
be concentrated in truck and service out- 

Throughout the emergency period and 
during the early months of the war before 
the OCS began turning out Negro officers, 
the Negro units in the QMC had only 
white officers. Although the policy was to 
replace white officers as rapidly as quali- 
fied Negro officers became available, the 
Negro officers were restricted at first to 
junior grades and white officers were re- 
tained as commanders of all Negro units. 
Subsequently some of the units were 
staffed entirely by Negro officers, but most 
of them even at the end of the war were 
under the supervision of white officers. By 
the end of November 1943 only 76 of the 
468 Negro Quartermaster units in the 
United States, exclusive of those in the 
AAF and in staging areas, had Negro of- 
ficers, and many of these had only one. A 
year later the percentage of Negro units 

in the zone of interior that were partially 
or entirely staffed by Negro officers had in- 
creased to 25 percent and by July 1945 to 
nearly 40 percent. 90 

By the fall of 1942 the Quartermaster 
OCS was commissioning Negroes faster 
than they were being assigned by the War 
Department. This situation arose because 
no provision had been made in the existing 
Troop Basis for absorbing all of them with- 
out replacing white officers in well-estab- 
lished units and disrupting the training 
program. Consequently The Quartermas- 
ter General requested and obtained per- 
mission to assign a 25 percent overstrength 
in lieutenants to units in which Negro of- 
ficers were then assigned. Under this 
policy he was allowed to assign an addi- 
tional lieutenant to a company even 
though the unit previously had been 
authorized only two Negro officers. By 
October 1942 the QMC had sixty-nine 
truck companies with four Negro lieuten- 
ants and one white captain each, and forty 
service companies with three Negro lieu- 
tenants and one white captain each. 91 

The overstrength of officers in units had 
a number of advantages. One was that 
Negro officers could be sent to units in- 

88 (I) Ltr, TAG to CG SOS et al.,28 Apr 42, sub: 
Policy on Assignment of Negro Off Pers, AG 210.31 
(4-13-42) OF. (2) Ltr, TAG to TQMG et a!., 29 Feb 
44, sub: Policy on Promotion and Assignment of 
Negro Off Pers, AG 210.31 (24 Feb 44) OB-S- 
SPGAC-M. (3) Ltr, TQMG to TAG, 1 1 Mar 44, sub: 
Negro Offs, 210.31. 

S! > Memo, TQMG to CSigO, 25 Aug 43, sub: Al- 
leged Lack of Colored Offs in QM and SigC Depots. 

90 S-93 Rpts, Strength Accounting Br, AGO, 30 
Nov 43, 1 Nov 44, and 1 Jul 45, sub: Colored Pers in 
the Continental U.S., Exclusive of the AAF and Stag- 
ing Areas. 

91 (1) DF, ACofS G-3for G-1, 28 Aug 42, sub: As- 
signment of Negro Offs. (2) DF, ACofS G-1 for TAG, 
29 Aug 42, same sub. (3) Memo, Col Whitehead, 
OQMG, for ACofS G-1, 15 Oct 42, same sub. All in 



stead of to the officer pool and thus gain 
valuable on-the-job training and experi- 
ence that would enable them eventually 
to relieve white officers and possibly take 
over the command. Another advantage 
was that the officer overstrength tended to 
overcome the ineffectiveness of Negro 
units, which usually were comprised pre- 
dominantly of Grades IV and V enlisted 
men and often had weak noncommissioned 
officers. Moreover, the overstrength fre- 
quently prevented units from falling below 
authorized strength through officer attri- 
tion, which was particularly heavy among 
Negro units. 

Although adequate provisions were 
made in the Troop Basis in 1943 and there- 
after for the increasing number of Negro 
officers, the policy of assigning over- 
strength in officers not only was continued 
but was broadened to permit the assign- 
ment of additional lieutenants to units 
without any Negro officers, to units not yet 
activated, and to overhead positions. Dur- 
ing 1943 the officers assigned to units as 
overstrength sometimes accompanied their 
units overseas, but more often were re- 
moved before the units left the country 
and sent to other units. This removal be- 
came mandatory in January 1944 when 
the assignment of an overstrength in offi- 
cers to overseas units was forbidden. 92 

Under the general revision of policy at 
that time the War Department lifted some 
of the former restrictions on the assignment 
of Negro officers and made the system 
more flexible. Commanders were author- 
ized to waive age-in-grade restrictions to 
permit the assignment of qualified over- 
age Negro officers to troop units, and new 
units were given high priority in the assign- 
ment of officers in order to get the best 
ones available and thus lessen the need for 
replacement of white officers at a later 

date. Moreover, the War Department 
ordered that vacancies in units "be created 
for Negro officers, as they become capable 
of duties and responsibilities of higher 
grades, by the transfer of white officers to 
other units and installations." 93 

Inasmuch as Negro units usually had a 
preponderance of low-grade personnel, 
officers with strong qualities of leadership 
were needed to train them and maintain 
discipline. Lt. Gen. Joseph T. McNarney, 
Deputy Chief of Staff, declared in August 
1942 that an investigation into incidents 
involving alleged undisciplined conduct 
on the part of Negro units had revealed 
that they were invariably the outgrowth of 
the tendency to assign officers of mediocre 
caliber to such units. He pointed out that 
Negro troops expected strong, capable 
leadership and were "quick to sense its ab- 
sence." Accordingly he ordered corrective 
measures taken to insure the assignment to 
Negro units of "officers of especially high 
qualities, particularly judgment and com- 
mon sense, tact, initiative and leader- 
ship." 94 

Difficulty was encountered in carrying 
out this order because officers with the de- 
sired qualities were not always available. 
As late as February 1944 the Command- 
ing General, ASF, announced that viola- 
tions of this order were coming to his 
attention and directed each commander 
to make a survey to determine whether the 
officers in Negro units under his command 
were fully qualified. Those who were found 
to be unqualified were to be replaced by 
qualified officers "with the least practica- 

92 Ltr, TAG to CG ASF etal., 7 Jan 44, suh: Policy 
on Promotion and Assignment of Negro Off Pers. AG 
210.31 (3 Jan 44) OS-A-M. 

*» Ibid. 

94 Ltr, DCofS to CG SOS, 10 Aug 42. sub: Profes- 
sional Qualities of Offs Assigned to Negro Units. 



ble delay." 95 This directive was followed a 
month later by an order that no white of- 
ficer with an efficiency rating lower than 
excellent could be assigned to a Negro 
unit. Such a rating did not necessarily 
mean that an officer possessed the proper 
leadership qualities. Consequently Head- 
quarters, ASF, finally issued instructions 
on 1 November 1944 that the demon- 
strated leadership ability of an officer 
rather than his efficiency rating would be 
the requisite for assignment to Negro units 
undergoing training in the technical serv- 
ices. Other factors to be taken into consid- 
eration in making these appointments 
were "mature judgment and common 
sense, even disposition and patience, 
demonstrated ability under pressure and 
ability to handle emergency situations, 
and ability to organize and foster athletic 
and recreational programs." n8 

This new policy of selecting officers for 
Negro units on the basis of their demon- 
strated leadership ability was extended by 
the ASF to Negro noncommissioned offi- 
cers insofar as it was possible to do so. The 
objective was to improve the effectiveness 
of Negro units by strengthening the qual- 
ity of their noncommissioned officers. 
Earlier in 1944 a troop leadership train- 
ing course had been established at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC for the purpose of 
training potential noncommissioned offi- 
cers, both Negro and white, selected from 
among the outstanding trainees who had 
completed their basic training. The short- 
age of noncommissioned officers w as par- 
ticularly acute among the Negroes because 
the quotas for Negro officer candidates 
virtually exhausted the exceedingly lim- 
ited supply of Negro enlisted men in the 
high AGCT grades. 97 

The total enrollment of Negro candi- 
dates in the Quartermaster OCS between 

Pearl Harbor and V-J Day was approxi- 
mately 850. About 650 of these were 
graduated. Thus the proportion of Negro 
candidates who failed to receive their com- 
missions was less than 24 percent as com- 
pared with failures of more than 18 
percent of the combined total enrollment 
of the OCS during the war. 98 Much if not 
all of this difference can be accounted for 
by the fact that most of the Negro candi- 
dates were graduated after the standards 
of the school had been raised and the pro- 
portion of those who failed was much 
greater than it had been during the early 
months of the OCS when virtually all of 
the officer candidates were white. 

The Negro officer strength in the QMC 
increased more rapidly during the last 
year of the war than in any other twelve- 
month period, despite the fact that the 
total number of Negro personnel was then 
declining and many officers were being 
separated from the service. As late as 31 
August 1943 there were only 625 Negro 
Quartermaster officers. By 30 June 1945, 
after the war had ended in Europe, the 
number was still only 749. Yet by 31 Au- 
gust 1945 the number had jumped to 900, 
of whom nearly 700 were overseas. Thus 
most of the increase took place in the thea- 
ters during the redeployment period when 
there were extensive transfers of both of- 

'' 5 Ltr Hq AS F to Chiefs of Tech Svs, 1 Feb 44, on 
sub cite d n, 94.1 

96 ( 1 ) Ltr, Hq ASF to TQMG al., 1 N ov 44 , sub : 
Assignment of White Offs to Colored Units Under- 
going Tng. (2) Ltr, Hq ASF to TQMG et al., 1 Apr 
44, sub: Qualifications of Offs Assigned to Negro 

■' 1 (1) Ltr, Hq ASF to TQMG et al., 15 Nov 44, sub: 
Assignments to Negro Units Undergoing Tng, 210.31. 
(2) Ltr, TQMG to CG Camp Lee QMRTC, 2 1 Mar 
44, sub: Establishment of a Leadership Tng Course, 

08 Computed by author from data obtained from 
Mil Tng Div, OQMG, and Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng 
of Off Candidates, Pt. II, pp. 21-22. 



ficers and enlisted men among the various 
arms and services. B9 


The QMC was at a serious disadvantage 
in the procurement of officers at the be- 
ginning of mobilization for World War II 
because of the early restrictions that the 
War Department had placed upon its 
sources of commissioned personnel. In 
contrast to the arms and most of the other 
services, the Corps was not permitted to 
conduct Quartermaster ROTC classes to 
develop officer material, nor to participate 
directly in the distribution of the graduates 
of the U.S. Military Academy. Thus the 
additional officers required by the QMC 
to meet its expanding needs at first could 
be obtained only by calling Reserve offi- 
cers to extended active duty, by requesting 
the transfer of officers from other branches 
of the Army, or by commissioning civil- 
ians. The difficulty was that many of the 
Reserve officers were either unqualified or 
not immediately available for duty; that 
officers acquired from other branches were 
generally unfamiliar with Quartermaster 
operations, and moreover the commanders 
of those branches frequently protested the 
transfers on the ground that they needed 
the officers themselves; and that officers 
commissioned directly from civilian life 
usually were completely lacking in mili- 
tary training and experience. 

The restrictions on procurement of com- 
missioned personnel in the Corps resulted, 
undoubtedly, from the general tendency 

in the early stages of mobilization to base 
requirements on World War I experience 
and from the slow awakening to the fact 
that the QMC would play a more impor- 
tant role in a modern war conducted on a 
global scale than it ever had in the past. It 
became apparent fairly early that the in- 
creased complexity of warfare had made it 
necessary for the Corps to have many 
more officers with a much wider variety of 
technical skills than had been previously 
anticipated, but it was 1943 before it was 
fully realized that the Quartermaster offi- 
cer would have to be a combat leader as 
well as a technical specialist. 

The extended duration of the emer- 
gency was a vital period of adjustment for 
the Corps during which The Quartermas- 
ter General by determined efforts gradu- 
ally won approval of his program for 
widening the scope of officer procurement. 
The most important development, of 
course, was the establishment late in 1941 
of the Officer Candidate School, which 
eventually furnished the great bulk of the 
nearly 30,000 additional officers procured 
by the Corps during the war. 

The need for competent Quartermaster 
officers was particularly urgent because an 
unusually large percentage of the enlisted 
men in the QMC were rated in the lower 
grades on the Army General Classification 
Test. Upon the ability of its officers to 
train and lead these men effectively in the 
performance of their duties rested the suc- 
cess of the Corps in carrying out its mission. 

BS Monthly Rpts, AGO to WDGS, Strength of the 
Army, 31 Aug 43, 30Jun 45, and 31 Aug 45. 


The Training of Enlisted 

The scope of operations in World War 
II and the accompanying revolutionary 
developments in aerial warfare as well as 
the motorization and mechanization of 
modern armies greatly broadened the 
range and complicated the problems of 
Quartermaster training. For the first time 
in history the United States Army was 
called upon to participate in large-scale 
operations in every conceivable climate, 
from the frigid Arctic to the sweltering 
desert and steaming jungle. Quartermaster 
personnel had to be trained to operate 
under all of these diversified conditions 
and to supply the men with appropriate 
clothing, food, and personal equipment, as 
well as to provide them with many other 

The world-wide nature of the conflict 
multiplied the problems of supply and dis- 
tribution. In World War I, for example, 
the United States had only 2,000,000 men 
overseas and they could all be supported 
by one supply line approximately 3,000 
miles long. At the end of that line mate- 
rials were unloaded at friendly ports 
equipped with adequate handling, storage, 
and transportation facilities. In sharp con- 
trast, the Army in World War II had more 
than 5,000,000 men scattered all over the 
world, including many little-known 
islands, and this required the planning 

and filling of numerous supply lines, some 
of them up to 12,000 miles long. More- 
over, many of the ports had to be captured 
from the enemy, and the only facilities for 
handling, storing, and transporting sup- 
plies were those which the Quartermaster 
and other technical service units could 
provide after a forced landing by combat 

In previous wars Quartermaster person- 
nel had had to battle only the business and 
service problems involved in keeping sup- 
plies moving to the front. In this new kind 
of warfare, they could no longer operate in 
relative safety behind the front lines. They 
were subject to attack from coastal guns, 
airplanes, paratroops, and fast-moving 
mechanized columns. It was imperative 
that they be trained to withstand the shock 
of battle and be prepared to fight back in 
emergencies, for if they failed to keep their 
supply lines open the men who depended 
upon them for food, clothing, and equip- 
ment would be in grave danger. 

Motorization of the Army brought 
marked changes in the nature of Quarter- 
master training, particularly during the 
emergency and early part of the war when 
the Quartermaster Corps was responsible 
for the transportation of the Army. During 
that period approximately half of all per- 
sonnel assigned to the QMRTC's were 



trained as truck drivers, mechanics, and 
for other jobs in the automotive field. Mo- 
torization also created the need for new 
types of Quartermaster units, such as gaso- 
line supply companies, drum repair units, 
and petroleum laboratories. Moreover, the 
widespread use of mobile units and mech- 
anized equipment greatly increased the 
need for maintenance, repair, and sal- 
vage personnel. 

The magnitude of the training task is 
exemplified by the fact that most of the 
500,000 men needed by the Corps to carry 
on its numerous functions had been civil- 
ians before the war and had had no pre- 
vious military experience. A large propor- 
tion of them had followed entirely different 
types of work in civilian life, or had had no 
occupation at all. They had to be trained 
quickly and efficiently to do the specific 
jobs assigned to them. The training was 
not only difficult and highly diversified 
but, for the most part, it was also prosaic 
and utilitarian. 

While the general policies for training 
in the various arms and services were for- 
mulated at higher echelons, the responsi- 
bility for implementing these policies with- 
in the QMC and preparing the detailed 
Quartermaster training doctrine rested 
with the Office of The Quartermaster 
General. During the course of the war the 
Quartermaster administrative agencies 
had staff supervision and responsibility for 
organizing and operating two replacement 
training centers, three unit training cen- 
ters, six war dog training centers, courses 
in twenty-two civilian trade and factory 
schools, special training programs in three 
civilian educational institutions, training 
programs for nine Quartermaster ROTC 
units in colleges and universities, and nu- 
merous other special schools and courses. 
All of these were in addition to the regular 

courses for officer candidates, commis- 
sioned officers, and noncommissioned offi- 
cers at the Quartermaster School. 

In order to standardize Quartermaster 
training and to make it conform with ex- 
isting War Department and Quartermas- 
ter training doctrine, the Military Train- 
ing Division and its predecessors prepared 
nineteen separate Quartermaster mobili- 
zation training programs between July 
1940 and September 1945. These pro- 
grams served as general guides for all 
Quartermaster enlisted replacement and 
unit training. The many revisions that 
were made reflected the continuous de- 
velopment in fundamental doctrine and 
were necessary to meet the changing 
training requirements in the transition 
from peacetime and early mobilization 
training to realistic preparation of troops 
for overseas operations and for redeploy- 
ment from the European to the Pacific 
theater in the final phase of the war. 1 

The emphasis upon speed and effective- 
ness in training made it necessary to re- 
vamp completely the method of instruct- 
ing trainees. The lecture system was virtu- 
ally discarded, textbooks and training 
manuals were revised, and the most 
modern teaching techniques were adopted 
in order to produce the greatest number of 
trained Quartermaster personnel in the 
shortest possible time. The new method 
employed the widespread use of training 
films, film strips, 2 and numerous other 
visual aids such as miniature models, tran- 

1 For a detailed study of the genesis, content, use, 
and significance of the Quartermaster mobilization 
training programs, see Rogers W. Young, Mobiliza- 
tion Training Plans and Programs for the Quarter- 
master Soldier, 1 933-194-5 (QMC hist monograph, 
1946). (Hereafter cited as Young, Mobil Tng Plans 
and Programs.) 

2 A film strip is a series of still photographs or other 


TRAINEES REPAIRING SHOES at the post shoe repair shop, Camp Lee, Va., 
June 1941. 

scribed records, charts, graphs, dramatiza- 
tions, as well as practical field demonstra- 
tions, as a means of reducing the gap 
between theoretical classroom instruction 
and actual field conditions. It stressed 
learning by doing. The men were in- 
structed in basic principles, shown the cor- 
rect way of doing their jobs, and then 
given an early opportunity to perform the 
tasks themselves. In this way their mis- 
takes could be pointed out, and they could 
gradually acquire the necessary skill 
through practice. Their instruction was 
standardized and expedited through the 
preparation of more than 260 manuals, 
bulletins, regulations, pamphlets, and 
other training publications, and the pro- 

duction of 184 motion pictures and film 
strips under the direction of the OQMG. 3 
The new training techniques were not 
perfected overnight. Most of them were 
developed and improved as the war pro- 
gressed. Many problems had to be solved. 
For one thing, there was at first a serious 
shortage of competent instructors and it 
took time to train an adequate number. 
For another, modern equipment was ex- 
tremely scarce during the early part of the 
war, and the training camps had to wait 
until the nation's production lines could 
provide a reserve that could be used for 
training purposes. 

3 Rpt, Mil Tng Div to TQMG, 11 Sep 45, sub: 
Outstanding Accomplishments in World War II. 



RIFLE PRACTICE, Quartermaster Replacement Training Center, Camp Lee, Va., 
June 1941. 

The training mission of the Corps was 
to prepare its officers, enlisted personnel, 
and units to carry out their assigned duties 
in such a manner as to increase the com- 
bat efficiency of the Army as a whole. 4 
The first step in the training process was 
to transform raw recruits into soldiers in 
the shortest possible time by means of a 
course in basic military training similar to 
that given other enlisted men in the Army. 
This training was designed to make them 
physically fit, indoctrinate them in Army 
procedure, impress upon them the value 
of teamwork, and teach them how to take 
care of themselves in the field. Upon com- 
pletion of their basic military training, 
Quartermaster soldiers were assigned to 

technical schools where each man was in- 
structed in one of the particular skills re- 
quired by the Corps. Inasmuch as the ma- 
jority of the men were classified as mili- 
tary specialists in fields related to trades 
they had followed in civilian life, their 
technical instruction could be restricted 
primarily to training in Army methods of 
handling their jobs. On the other hand, 
those assigned to specialized training in 
fields in which they had had no previous 
training required more elementary in- 
struction. Since these men could learn 
only the fundamentals of their specialties 
in the allotted training time, it was usually 

1 FM 10-5, p. 10, 29 Apr 43, sub: Opns. 



necessary to assign them as helpers and let 
them gradually acquire skill through on- 
the-job training. 

The normal procedure during World 
War II was to give Quartermaster recruits 
their basic military and technical training 
at one of the two QMRTC's. These cen- 
ters operated as the intermediate stage in 
the personnel processing plan. They ob- 
tained the recruits directly from the recep- 
tion centers, where the men had been clas- 
sified and had received their clothing, and 
then turned them out as individual spe- 
cialists. The bulk of these men were then 
assigned as filler or loss replacements to 
units where they received additional 
training. 5 Some were assigned to installa- 
tions or were selected to continue their 
technical training at one of the advanced 
schools operated by the Corps. Those who 
qualified as officer candidates were gen- 
erally sent to the Quartermaster Officer 
Candidate School as soon as they had 
completed their basic military training at 
the QMRTC. After being commissioned, 
they were either sent to an advanced 
school or depot for specialized officer 
training or assigned directly to a unit. 

The system of training recruits as en- 
listed replacements was analogous to the 
mass-production, interchangeable-parts 
technique widely employed in industry in 
that the men were trained as individual 
specialists in accordance with the varied 
requirements and then assembled else- 
where into units to perform their specific 
functions. This method of operation made 
it possible to concentrate the best training 
facilities and teaching personnel available 
and to achieve a standardization of in- 
struction that was usually lacking when 
the men were given their basic training 
within the units. 

Although most of the Quartermaster re- 

cruits were processed through the replace- 
ment training centers, thousands of them 
were not. Enlisted volunteers and selectees 
who came into the Corps before the estab- 
lishment of the QMRTC's in March 1941 
were trained in units. Recruits assigned to 
the Corps during the remainder of 1941 
were usually sent to the QMRTC's, but 
beginning early in 1942 the Corps ex- 
panded so rapidly that the centers were 
unable to accommodate all of the men as 
fast as they were inducted. So many new 
units were being organized that it was fre- 
quently necessary to bypass the QMRTC's 
entirely by sending filler replacements to 
units directly from reception centers. In 
the fall of 1942 a definite policy was estab- 
lished whereby these untrained fillers were 
sent only to units with a low priority rat- 
ing. 6 This policy was abandoned early in 
1944 with the adoption of the preactiva- 
tion plan, which provided that all recruits 
would be given individual training before 
being assigned to units. This plan relieved 
all units of the burden, which many of the 
earlier ones faced, of having to convert 
themselves into schools for the purpose of 
giving elementary instruction to their en- 
listed personnel. 

The Quartermaster General had full 
responsibility for preparing the training 
doctrine for all Quartermaster units, just 
as he did for enlisted men and officers in 
the Corps, yet he had direct control and 
training supervision over only a small pro- 
portion of those units. Quartermaster units 

5 The Army defines a replacement as an individual 
available for assignment to fill a vacancy. A filler re- 
placement is an officer or enlisted man added to a 
newly organized unit to bring it up to its prescribed 
strength. A loss replacement is an individual who 
takes the place of a person killed, wounded, or lost 
as a result of other causes. 

6 AGO Memo W61 5-22-42, 5 Sep 42, sub: Policy 
of Filling Requisitions For Filler and Loss Repls. 



assigned to the AGF generally were acti- 
vated and trained by various army com- 
manders under the direction of the Com- 
manding General, AGF. Similarly, Quar- 
termaster units serving in the AAF were 
trained under the direction of the Com- 
manding General, AAF. Even the ASF 
units, except those activated at installa- 
tions under the control of The Quarter- 
master General, were trained by the com- 
manders of the various corps areas or 
service commands. Yet no matter who had 
trained the units, any adverse criticism of 
them in the theaters of operations was 
likely to be directed at The Quartermaster 

The Development of Administrative 

Responsibility for the supervision and 
co-ordination of all Quartermaster mili- 
tary training during the first year of the 
emergency was vested in the War Plans 
and Training Branch of the Administrative 
Division. The training functions of this 
branch, however, were subordinate to its 
planning activities, as the number of in- 
stallations under the control of The Quar- 
termaster General at which training was 
being conducted was quite limited. They 
were the Quartermaster School then lo- 
cated in Philadelphia, the Motor Trans- 
port School in Baltimore, and nine bakers' 
and cooks' schools, one in each of the nine 
corps areas. 

Following the adoption of the Selective 
Service System and the calling of the Na- 
tional Guard into active service, the first 
of a series of administrative reorganiza- 
tions required to meet the expanding 
needs of the QMC occurred early in Oc- 
tober 1940. Training functions were trans- 
ferred at that time to the Personnel Divi- 

sion, and then three months later, effective 
2 January 1941 , to the newly created Mili- 
tary Personnel and Training Division. The 
responsibilities for both training and Re- 
serve personnel were combined in one 
branch, but before the end of 1941 these 
functions had increased to such an extent 
that they were divided by the creation of 
separate Reserve and Training Branches. 7 

Conflict Over Training Responsibility 

In order to obtain the technical data 
and assistance required in carrying out the 
training functions, it was necessary for the 
Training Branch and its predecessors to 
work in close collaboration with the vari- 
ous operating divisions and branches in 
the OQMG. These divisions and branches, 
however, were not content to confine their 
activities solely to co-operating with the 
Military Personnel and Training Division, 
but attempted openly in 1941 to retain 
partial, if not full, control over Quarter- 
master training pertinent to their opera- 

This situation resulted in much confu- 
sion, created difficulties, and seriously 
handicapped training activities within the 
Corps. Moreover, it caused embarrass- 
ment to the War Department because the 
various divisions and branches continued 
to maintain personal contact with, and to 
send their training plans and requests di- 
rectly to, The Adjutant General or some 
division of the General Staff. The Quar- 
termaster General found it necessary in 
October 1941 to issue a memorandum to 
all OQMG divisions, re-emphasizing that 
the Military Personnel and Training Divi- 
sion was charged with supervision and co- 
ordination of all training in the Corps for 

1 (l)OQMG OO 99, 10 Oct 40, no sub. (2) OQMG 
OO 144, 27 Dec 40, sub: Office Orgn. 



which he was responsible to higher au- 
thority. He pointed out that it was the 
function of this division to maintain liaison 
with the War Department General Staff 
as well as with the other arms and services, 
to initiate plans and obtain approval for 
activation or augmentation of training es- 
tablishments, to provide necessary equip- 
ment, to co-ordinate the training programs 
with the available facilities, and to deter- 
mine quotas and allotments of students 
and other personnel based on planning 
charts or records approved by G-3. 8 

Even with this reaffirmation of policy 
and persistent efforts as late as 1943 to en- 
force it, the Military Personnel and Train- 
ing Division (later the Military Training 
Division) was not wholly successful in ob- 
taining full control in the OQMG over all 
segments of Quartermaster training. Dur- 
ing the course of the war the Subsistence 
Branch (later Division), exercised a large 
measure of control over the training of 
bakers and cooks and bakery units, as did 
the Remount Branch over the training of 
dog handlers. In both of these instances, 
however, the division co-ordinated and 
scheduled the training within the operat- 
ing branches, prepared the training man- 
uals in collaboration with them, and dealt 
with higher echelons. In contrast to this 
situation the Motor Transport Division 
engaged in a bitter fight to prevent the 
Military Personnel and Training Division 
from gaining any control over motor- 
transport training activities and finally 
emerged victorious in the spring of 1942. 
This outcome had no lasting consequences 
since motor transport activities were trans- 
ferred to the Ordnance Department in 
August of that year. 9 

The steady increase in the training re- 
sponsibilities of the Corps and the lack of 
an adequate organization within the 

OQMG to cope with them led the Com- 
manding General, SOS, in the summer of 
1942 to order The Quartermaster General 
to organize a training division to replace 
the Training Branch. He directed that the 
new division be established along lines 
similar to those of the Training Division, 
SOS, in order "to emphasize training to 
the proper degree and to make possible a 
more efficient cooperation in training mat- 
ters" between the two divisions. 10 

The Military Training Division took 
over training activities in the Corps on 4 
September 1942 and continued in exist- 
ence until after the war ended. Its mission 
was "to establish policies, prepare plans, 
and to supervise and coordinate training 
in reception centers, replacement training 
centers, schools and units assigned to the 
Quartermaster Corps." 11 Although in- 
ternal readjustments were necessary from 
time to time in the number and the duties 
of its various branches, the division's re- 
sponsibilities were not altered. 

Relationships With Other Echelons 

Fundamental policies for training in all 
of the arms and services were formulated 
by the G-3 Division, War Department 
General Staff. The Training Branch and 
its predecessors in the OQMG dealt di- 
rectly with G-3 in carrying out these 

8 Memo, TQMG for All OQMG Divs, 14 Oct 41, 
no sub. 

" (1) Vernon Carstensen, Motor Transport Under 
The Quartermaster General, 1903-1942 (OQMG hist 
rpt, 1945), pp. 125-36. (2) Dir of Mil Tng Div to 
TQMG, 18 Jan 43, sub: Consolidation of Mil Tng 
Activities OQMG. (3) Dir of S&D Div to Mil Tng 
Div, OQMG, 26 Jan 43, same sub. (4) OQMG OO 
25-24A, 2 Aug 43, sub: Orgn of Food Sv Sec, Sub- 
sistence Br. 

10 Memo, CG SOS for TQMG, 14 Aug 42, sub: 
Orgn of a Tng Div. 

11 OQMG OO 25.1, 30 Aug 42, sub: Establishment 
of a Mil Tng Div. 



policies within the Corps throughout the 
emergency period and the first three 
months of the war. After the reorganization 
of the War Department on 9 March 1942, 
The Quartermaster General and the 
chiefs of the other supply services became 
subordinates of the Commanding General, 
SOS. Within this new framework, the 
Training Branch in the OQMG — and 
later on-the Military Training Division — 
was under the direct control of the Train- 
ing Division in the SOS headquarters, 
which in turn was responsible to G-3. This 
same relationship existed when SOS be- 
came the ASF in March 1943. 

At the beginning of the emergency pe- 
riod, corps area commanders were fully 
responsible for all training of individuals 
and units under their command except at 
installations specifically exempted by the 
War Department. In the case of the QMC, 
the exemptions were the Quartermaster 
School and the Motor Transport School, 
over which The Quartermaster General 
had complete control, and the nine bakers' 
and cooks' schools, for which he was re- 
sponsible only for furnishing the personnel 
and conducting the training, while each 
corps area commander exercised the ad- 
ministrative supervision over the school 
under his command. The Quartermaster 
General supplied the doctrine for other 
Quartermaster training in the corps area, 
but he had no further authority, not even 
to conduct inspections. 12 

When the QMRTC's were established 
early in 1941, they were placed under the 
administrative control of the corps areas 
in which they were located, but The Quar- 
termaster General was given the responsi- 
bility for conducting all training. Shortly 
after Pearl Harbor the administrative 
function was shifted to The Quartermaster 
General, and he retained complete control 

over both the Camp Lee and Fort Warren 
centers until August 1942, At that time the 
War Department redesignated the corps 
areas as service commands and assigned 
them the administrative duties at the cen- 
ters. Under this change in regulations, the 
Commanding General, SOS, was made 
responsible for training at the centers, but 
inasmuch as he delegated this authority to 
The Quartermaster General, the latter's 
control over the training was not affected. 
The same relationship was established and 
maintained in regard to Quartermaster 
schools located in areas controlled by the 
service commands, as well as in reference 
to Quartermaster unit training centers 
when they were organized in 1943 and 
1944. 13 

The administrative supervision at the 
Camp Lee QMRTC was again vested in 
The Quartermaster General early in May 
1943, and he continued to exercise com- 
plete control over its operations until after 
V-J Day, even though the installation was 
redesignated as an ASF training center in 
April 1944. On the other hand, the Fort 
Warren center — which was inactivated as 
a QMRTC in the fall of 1943, designated 
a Quartermaster unit training center in 
September 1943, and redesignated an ASF 
training center in April 1944 — continued 
under the administrative control of the 
Seventh Service Command from August 
1942 through V-J Day. Throughout that 
period The Quartermaster General was 
responsible for the conduct and supervi- 
sion of training, the promulgation of train- 

>-(l) AR 170-10, 10 Oct 39, sub: CAs and 
Depts — Adm. (2) AR 350-105, 17 Dec 40, sub: Mil 

1:1 ( 1 ) Ltr of Instruction No. 1 , Dir of Mil Pers and 
Trig Div, OQMG, to CGs Camp Lee and Ft. Warren 
QMRTCs, 13 Jan 41, sub: RTCs. (2) AR 170-10, 10 
Aug 42, sub: SvCs and Depis — Adm. 



ing doctrine, and the scheduling of pro- 
grams at Fort Warren. 14 

As in the case of commanding officers of 
all arms and services, the authority of The 
Quartermaster General to conduct inspec- 
tions of training was limited until the mid- 
dle of 1942 to the schools, training centers, 
and field installations under his direct con- 
trol, except when temporary responsibility 
was delegated to him by higher authority. 
Although he provided the doctrine for 
other Quartermaster training, the deter- 
mination of how that training was being 
conducted rested solely with the corps 
area commanders. During the latter half 
of 1942 The Quartermaster General was 
given more latitude in the matter of in- 
spections. The changes in Army Regula- 
tions early in August of that year made the 
service commands the field agencies of the 
Commanding General, SOS, and inas- 
much as the latter retained control over all 
training activities he could delegate such 
authority as he desired. On this basis he 
extended The Quartermaster General's 
responsibilities to include inspection of 
Quartermaster technical training con- 
ducted under the control of the service 
commands and the AGF whenever these 
commands considered such inspection 
necessary. 15 

Late in December 1942, however, the 
War Department shifted the responsibility 
for making inspections to the service com- 
mands. This action cast considerable 
doubt upon the authority of The Quarter- 
master General to conduct any training 
inspection other than at the installations 
under his direct control. Nevertheless, act- 
ing under instructions from the Command- 
ing General, SOS, he continued to make 
inspections of technical Quartermaster 
training carried on in SOS units by the 
service commands, as well as complete in- 

spections of Quartermaster training under 
his control. This period of confusion lasted 
throughout the first five months of 1943. 
Finally, early in June, the situation was 
clarified when Headquarters, ASF (for- 
merly SOS), issued orders that inspections 
of training of ASF units conducted under 
the control of the service commands were 
to be made by The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral and the chiefs of the other technical 
services only upon the direction or with 
the permission of the Commanding Gen- 
eral, ASF, or upon the request of the serv- 
ice commanders. Such inspections were to 
cover only technical training. Inspections 
of ASF units were carried out on this basis 
until 1 December 1944, at which time 
Headquarters, ASF, transferred the full 
responsibility for inspections to the service 
commands. From then until the end of the 
war, inspections of Quartermaster training 
in ASF units in the service commands 
were made by The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral only upon the request of the service 
commanders and they were restricted to 
technical training. 16 

The Quartermaster General had virtu- 
ally no authority over the training of 
Quartermaster units in the AGF and the 
AAF, other than to supply the doctrine. 

14 (1) AR 170-10, Change 5, 12 May 43, sub: SvCs 
and Depts— Adm. (2) ASF Cir 28, 1 2 May 43, sub: 
Designation of Tng Activities and Regulations Under 
Provisions of A R 170-10. 

15 For a detailed account of how The Quartermas- 
ter General's inspection authority changed during the 
war years, see Rogers W. Young, Inspection of Military 
Training by The Quartermaster General, QMC Historical 
Studies, 15 (Washington, 1946), pp. 1-4, 38-40, 47- 
49, 71-99. (Hereafter cited as Young, Inspection of 
Military Training . ) 

16 (1) AR 170-10, par. 4, 24 Dec 42, sub: SvCs and 
Depts — Adm. (2) Young, Inspection of Military Train- 
ing, pp. 47-49, 71-99. (3) ASF Cir 37, 4 Jun 43, sub: 
Designation of Tng Activities and Installations Under 
Provisions of AR 170-10. (4) ASF Cir 393, Sec. II, 
1 Dec 44, sub: Tng Insp. 



The installations at which most of these 
units were trained were exempted from 
the control of the service commands, and 
consequently neither the service com- 
manders nor the ASF headquarters could 
authorize The Quartermaster General to 
carry on inspections at them. Although 
The Inspector General, beginning in the 
spring of 1943, called upon The Quarter- 
master General from time to time for as- 
sistance in inspecting the steadily increas- 
ing number of units being prepared for 
movement overseas, it was late in Septem- 
ber of that year before any specific provi- 
sion was made for The Quartermaster 
General to inspect Quartermaster units in 
the AAF and the AGF. At that time the 
War Department authorized the chiefs of 
all the technical services to visit troops and 
installations of the AGF, AAF, service 
commands, and defense commands within 
the United States "in order that the Chief 
of Staff may obtain up-to-date information 
concerning the technical training of per- 
sonnel and the suitability of weapons and 
equipment to meet the needs of the using 
arms and services." 17 These visits were to 
be made only by arrangement with the 
commanding general of the major com- 
mand concerned, and the inspection was 
to be confined to technical matters. 

The Military Training Division, 
OQMG, anticipated that these visits would 
prove valuable "in developing material 
for changes in training doctrine, and in 
making detailed observations on the use 
and operation of Quartermaster clothing 
and equipment." 18 But none of these in- 
spection visits occurred until February 
1944, and they proved highly disappoint- 
ing because they did not produce any 
notable results. Both the AGF and the 
AAF displayed a marked reluctance to 
give The Quartermaster General permis- 

sion to make such inspections and were in- 
clined to consider them as intrusions into 
their responsibilities. Consequently only a 
few of these inspection trips actually ma- 
terialized and none were made after the 
middle of 1944. 19 

Quartermaster Replacement 
Training Centers 

The general procedure followed in 
World War II of giving recruits their basic 
military and technical training at replace- 
ment centers rather than in units was not 
entirely new. While all infantrymen and 
most of the other enlisted men in 1917-18 
were trained in units, the QMC and some 
of the other arms and services operated 
schools where the men were frequently 
given special training before being as- 
signed to units. 

In the case of the QMC, this special 
training during World War I took place at 
what came to be known as the Quarter- 
master University at Camp Joseph E. 
Johnston, Jacksonville, Fla. Although used 
for this purpose and to some extent also as 
a center for training units, Camp Johnston 
was primarily a mobilization center. Dis- 
tinct areas were set aside for the different 
functions. Moreover, since the men there 
were sometimes organized into special 
companies to receive training as enlisted 
replacements, Camp Johnston bore some 
parental resemblance to the replacement 
training centers of World War II, though 
it differed in organization, method of op- 

" AGO Memo W265-L-43, 22 Sep 43, sub: Tech 
Insps of Troops and Installations by Representatives 
of Chiefs of Tech Svs. 

1B Col Hendershot, Mil Tng Div, to Gen Munni- 
khuysen, Pers Div, OQMG, 25 Sep 43, sub: Tech Tng 

For a more detailed account, see Young, Inspection 
of Military Training, pp. 90-92, 1 17-120. 



eration, and purpose. Often the term re- 
placement center was even used in refer- 
ring to that part of the installation devoted 
to this special training, but officially it was 
called a replacement depot and was uti- 
lized principally for holding rather than 
training replacements. 20 

One of the shortcomings of the World 
War I plan of training men in units was 
that no adequate provision was made for 
enlisted replacements. By the summer of 
1918 it had become necessary to skeleton- 
ize seven divisions in order to obtain the 
necessary replacements for the ones 
already in the line. Shortly before the end 
of the war General John J. Pershing de- 
clared in a cable to the War Department 
that to "send over entire divisions, which 
must be broken up on their arrival in 
France so that we may obtain replace- 
ments that have not been sent as called for, 
is a wasteful method. . . ." 21 In mobiliza- 
tion planning after World War I, special 
efforts were made to provide a sound re- 
placement system for any future emer- 

Replacement centers, as they were orig- 
inally called, became an accepted part of 
training plans early in 1924, but the ques- 
tion of how many Quartermaster centers 
there should be and where they should be 
located remained unsettled until late in 
1940. At that time it was finally decided to 
concentrate Quartermaster training at 
two "replacement and training centers," 
one at Camp Lee, Va., and the other at 
Fort Francis E. Warren, Wyo. During 1941 
these two installations were known offi- 
cially as replacement centers, but the name 
was changed to replacement training cen- 
ters early in 1942. 22 

When The Quartermaster General 
learned of the decision early in November 
1940 to establish the centers at Camp Lee 
and Fort Warren, he made a last-minute 

plea that the plans be modified and that 
he be permitted to centralize all Quarter- 
master training in one center, which, he 
pointed out, would result in a material re- 
duction in overhead. He proposed Belton, 
Mo., near Kansas City, as the site because 
it was "very close to the geographical cen- 
ter of the country," and suggested that the 
Administration and Supply School at 
Philadelphia, the Motor Transport School 
at Baltimore, and the Subsistence School 
at Chicago be moved there so that all of 
these training activities, as well as unit 
training, could be consolidated at a loca- 
tion where there would be plenty of room 
for expansion. He argued that because of 
the "specialized and diversified nature of 
Quartermaster instruction, one Replace- 
ment Training Center simplified the prob- 
lem of coordinated training of the many 
different types of Quartermaster units," 
and added that "officer candidate and en- 
listed replacement training can be utilized 
to the best advantage in conjunction with 
unit training." 23 The General Staff, how- 
ever rejected his recommendation on the 
grounds of the additional cost involved in 
the purchase of the land and the possible 
loss of time in construction and in train- 
ing. 21 

Construction of the twenty-one Army 
replacement training centers was author- 
ized following the enactment of the Selec- 

20 Joseph J. Mathews, The Development of the Quar- 
termaster Replacement Training Centers, QMC Historical 
Studies. 3 (Washington, 1943), pp. 4-5. (Hereafter 
cited as Mathews, Development o/QMRTCs ) 

- 1 Final Report of Gen. John J. Pershing, Commander in 
Chief of Expeditionary Forces (Washington, 1920) pp. 

22 (1) AR 120-10, 5 Mar 24 and 20 Jul 28. sub: 
Mobil. (2) For a more detailed account of the origin 
of the replacement training centers, see Mathews, De- 
velopment of QfviRTCs, pp. 1-11. 

- :i Ltr, Gen Gregory, TQMG, to ACofS G-3, 8 Nov 
40, sub: Repl andTng Centers for the QMC, 353. 

24 Ltr, Maj Gen R. C. Moore, DCofS, to TQMG, 
20 Nov 40, sub: Repl and Tng Centers for the QMC. 



tive Service Act in September 1940. The 
Quartermaster centers at Camp Lee and 
Fort Warren were placed in operation 
about the middle of March 1941 even 
though work on the installations was still 
in progress. Cadremen as well as military 
and civilian instructors were sent to the 
centers a month earlier to receive instruc- 
tions and to prepare for the arrival of the 
men from the reception centers. Selectees 
inducted before the opening of Camp Lee 
and Fort Warren were trained in units, but 
instructions were issued that their training 
was to follow the methods and doctrine 
prepared for use in the QMRTC's. 

Camp Lee was situated near Peters- 
burg, Va., on a site that had been utilized 
in World War I for one of the sixteen Army 
cantonments, but all of the old buildings 
had been dismantled. When the installa- 
tion was reconstructed in World War II, it 
was planned that it would serve not only 
as a QMRTC but also as a replacement 
center for the Medical Department and as 
one of twenty-nine Army reception cen- 
ters. Later on, near the end of 1 941 , the 
Quartermaster School and the Officer 
Candidate School were moved there from 
Philadelphia. The portion of Camp Lee 
reserved at first for the QMRTC had a ca- 
pacity of only 12,000 men. In the spring of 
1942, however, the Medical Replacement 
Training Center was transferred to Camp 
Pickett, and the absorption of the vacated 
facilities, together with additional con- 
struction and the utilization of tents, in- 
creased the capacity of the Camp Lee 
QMRTC to 29,000 before the end of 
1942. The number of trainees stationed 
there reached a peak of about 25,000 in 
October of that year and remained near 
that level until July 1943. 26 

The other QMRTC was located on the 
large reservation attached to Fort Warren, 
commonly referred to as the Old Post, 

near Cheyenne, Wyo. The fort, originally 
named in honor of a Civil War hero, 
David A. Russell, was established in 1867 
to protect workers on the first transconti- 
nental railroad, the Union Pacific, and 
had been in continuous existence there- 
after as an Army post. It was renamed in 
honor of Senator Francis E. Warren in 
1929. The Fort Warren QMRTC was 
smaller than the one at Camp Lee, having 
an initially authorized capacity of 7,000. 
It was greatly enlarged, however, by addi- 
tional construction in the latter half of 
1941 and again in 1942. Moreover, the 
center absorbed facilities at the Old Post 
early in 1942 when they were vacated by 
Artillery units that had used the fort as a 
training center until after the attack on 
Pearl Harbor. Then in March 1942, when 
a branch of the OCS was established at 
Fort Warren to take care of the overflow at 
Camp Lee, still further housing was pro- 
vided by the conversion of stables and gun- 
sheds into barracks and mess halls to ac- 
commodate enlisted trainees who were 
moved to make room for the incoming of- 
ficer candidates. As a result of these vari- 
ous measures to increase housing, the en- 
listed strength of the center rose to a peak 
of about 20,000 by the end of 1942, but it 
declined from then until the Fort Warren 
QMRTC was inactivated. 26 

Provisions were made early in 1941 
that, with few exceptions, Camp Lee would 

- : ' For a more detailed account of the background, 
construction, and expansion of Camp Lee, see two re- 
ports by Lt. Arthur M. Freedman, Background and 
Construction, Camp Lee, Va. (Camp Lee hist rpt, Apr 
44), and Expansion of the Center, Camp Lee, Va. 
(Camp Lee hist rpt, Mav 44), both in Hist Br, 

215 For a more detailed discussion of the background, 
construction, and expansion of Fort Warren, see two 
reports by Lt. Arthur M. Freedman. The "Old Fort" 
(Ft. Warren hist rpt, Jun 43) and Construction of the 
Replacement Training Center (Ft. Warren hist rpt 
Jun 43), both in Hist Br, OQMG. 



train personnel for all Quartermaster 
units to be activated and assigned to the 
First, Second, Third, and Fourth Corps 
Areas. Most of the installations where the 
units were being trained were located in 
these areas, which included the South- 
eastern, Middle Atlantic, and New Eng- 
land States. Enlisted replacements for 
Quartermaster units in the other corps 
areas were to be supplied by Fort Warren. 27 

Procedures During the Emergency Period 

The original Tables of Organization for 
all replacement training centers were pre- 
scribed by the War Department late in 
1940. They established the precedent, 
which was followed quite generally 
throughout most of the war, that recruits 
at these installations were to be organized 
into regiments for training purposes. The 
tables called for the establishment at each 
center of a headquarters, to consist of the 
commanding general and his staff depart- 
ments, and the required number of regi- 
ments, which were to be broken down into 
battalions and companies. Normally a 
regiment was to be comprised of three bat- 
talions, and each battalion of four com- 
panies. The company was to consist of 30 
cadremen and 222 selectees. 28 

The organizations of the staff depart- 
ments at Camp Lee and Fort Warren were 
similar in that each was divided into four 
departments on the basis of the functions 
to be performed, which may be described 
generally as administration and personnel, 
intelligence and public relations, training, 
and supply. The QMRTC's varied some- 
what in the way they were organized to 
conduct their training activities. At Fort 
Warren, basic military training, motor op- 
erations training, motor maintenance 
training, and supply training were under 

separate directors. Camp Lee had separate 
directors for basic military and supply 
training, but combined all motor training 
under one director. The training directors 
at each center supervised and co-ordi- 
nated the various schools that each estab- 
lished for technical training. They also 
supervised the operations of the training 
regiments, whose headquarters, in turn, 
were charged with organizing, supplying, 
and directing the basic military and tech- 
nical instruction of the trainees. 29 

Negro recruits at each QMRTC were 
organized into separate regiments and 
were housed and given their basic military 
training in segregated areas where they 
had their own training and recreational 
facilities. In the case of technical training, 
the situation varied at the two centers. At 
Camp Lee, where most of the Negroes in 
the Corps were trained, Negro and white 
trainees generally attended the same tech- 
nical schools and were given their instruc- 
tion together. At Fort Warren, on the 
other hand, separate schools were estab- 
lished to give Negro trainees technical in- 
struction in all courses except motor 
maintenance and courses for mess ser- 
geants, cooks, and bakers. Negro and 
white schools finally were merged in 1943 
to reduce the excessive instructor overhead 
required under the original plan. 30 

Fewer than a thousand Negroes were 

27 Ltr of Instruction No. 1, Gen Munnikhuysen, 
Dir of Mil Pers and Tng Div, OQMG, to Exec Off, 
Camp Lee and Ft. Warren, 13 Jan 41, no sub, 352. 

28 (1) Ibid. (2) Cadremen were the enlisted men as- 
signed to a cadre to assist in establishing and training 
a new unit. 

29 (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. I, p. 18. (2) Lt Arthur M. Freedman, Ad- 
ministrative Organization (Ft. Warren hist rpt, Dec 
43), p. 4, in Hist Br, OQMG. 

:!0 (1) Lt Arthur M. Freedman, General Aspects of 
the Training Program Ft, Warren (Ft. Warren hist 
rpt, Oct 43), pp. 12-13, in Hist Br, OQMG. 




sent to the Fort Warren QMRTC during 
the first half of 1941, and the maximum 
number in training there at any time dur- 
ing its existence was below twenty-four 
hundred. Consequently, the center found 
it necessary to organize only one Negro 
training regiment. Camp Lee in the begin- 
ning also had only one Negro regiment, 
but it comprised more than two thousand 
trainees even during the first training 
cycle. By the summer of 1942 the number 
of Negroes undergoing replacement train- 
ing at Camp Lee had more than doubled 
and it became necessary to establish a sec- 
ond Negro regiment. Although the num- 
ber of these trainees continued to increase 
throughout 1942 and the early part of 

1943, the peak at Camp Lee was under 
six thousand Negroes and the two regi- 
ments were adequate to accommodate 
them. 31 

Both the Camp Lee and Fort Warren 
QMRTC's were confronted early in their 
existence with problems common to most 
newly established emergency military 
training installations — construction de- 
lays, confused and embryonic administra- 
tive and training organizations, serious 
shortages of training facilities and equip- 
ment, inadequate instructional staffs, and 

31 (1) Lt Arthur M. Freedman, Activation and Ex- 
pansion of the QMRTC (Ft. Warren hist rpt, Aug 
43), App. A, in Hist Br, OQMG. (2) Freedman, Ex- 
pansion of the Center, Camp Lee, App. A. 



an untried program of instruction. How- 
ever, the lengthy duration of the emer- 
gency period provided the opportunity to 
solve most of these problems and to get the 
QMRTC's out of the experimental stage 
before the outbreak of actual hostilities. 

The first training cycle or phase of re- 
placement training, which began in 
March and continued through June 1941, 
was unique in several important respects 
as compared with later training oper- 
ations. One of these was that most of the 
men trained during that thirteen-week 
period were present when the cycle began, 
were given their training simultaneously, 
and then were moved out in a wholesale 
fashion when the cycle ended. This uni- 
formity was impossible later on because 
the recruits arrived at varying intervals 
and began their training at different times. 

The first cycle was different also in that 
its mission was to train a definite number 
of filler replacements for about a hundred 
Quartermaster units that were scheduled 
to be activated at the end of the period. 
Moreover, the men were assembled into 
units at the centers before they were 
moved out to other stations for activation 
of their units. Thus the first cycle approxi- 
mated unit training, even though the 
centers were concerned primarily with the 
training of individuals. Thereafter the 
Army expanded so rapidly and conditions 
changed so often and so quickly that the 
number of replacements for the many 
Quartermaster units being activated in all 
parts of the country could never be deter- 
mined accurately. 

Inasmuch as Camp Lee and Fort War- 
ren had to train approximately a hundred 
different types of Quartermaster special- 
ists, it was not practical for them to estab- 
lish separate technical schools for each 
specific type. Consequently, the original 

procedure was to group the men who were 
to be trained in similar fields into the same 
company or companies. 32 

Shortages of facilities and instructors 
during the early days made it impossible 
to give recruits all of their basic military 
training before they started their technical 
training. Instead, the balanced system was 
used in which both types of training were 
conducted concurrently and the time was 
divided, about equally between the two. 
Certain units were given their basic mili- 
tary instruction in the morning while 
others were using the technical training 
equipment. In the afternoon the schedule 
was reversed, and the company that had 
been on the drill field in the morning spent 
the afternoon in the classrooms or in the 
shops. 33 

With the completion of the first training 
cycle, replacement training was separated 
completely from unit training, and the 
QMRTC's assumed the role for which 
they were established. That is, instead of 
training men already organized in units, 
they began to train individual specialists 
to serve as fillers for units that were to be 
assembled and trained at other posts, 
camps, and stations. This meant that the 
centers were faced with the problem of 
training a sufficient number of replace- 
ments of all types without knowing specifi- 
cally how many of each type would be re- 

The only method available at that time 
for determining future requirements in the 
various specialties was that based on the 
occurrence rates per thousand men that 
had been established for distributing 
selectees to the Corps from reception cen- 
ters. The problem was solved temporarily 
by the expedient of training specialists of 

32 Mathews, Development of QMRTCs. p. 19. 

33 Ibid. 



the various types in the same proportion 
as the number called for in the Quarter- 
master units set up in the Troop Basis for 
1942. As an aid in solving the problem, 
The Quartermaster General prepared a 
table showingjust how many specialists of 
each type there were in existing units. The 
table, which also showed a percentage 
breakdown of whites and Negroes, af- 
forded a mathematical basis for computing 
replacement requirements. It was realized 
that these rates would not be precise guides 
for determining the correct ratios to be fol- 
lowed in training specialists, but it was ob- 
vious also that, since the centers were 
confronted by a growing Army with un- 
known requirements, they would have to 
operate with elasticity. 34 

The QMRTCs encountered other 
problems in their efforts to balance the 
training of replacements with the require- 
ments for them. It was found, for example, 
that the tentative classification given the 
trainees at reception centers was frequently 
in error. Inasmuch as it was highly im- 
portant that the trainees be classified cor- 
rectly so that training time could be con- 
served by utilizing the existing skills of the 
men to the fullest extent, it became the 
first function of the QMRTCs to reclassify 
recruits. The classification task at first was 
performed in the individual training regi- 
ments, but later on it was centralized in a 
single organization at each center. 35 

Another problem arose from the dis- 
covery that a large number of trainees 
were unable to grasp even the most simple 
technical instruction, principally because 
of their inability to read or write English. 
Such men had to be given special school- 
ing before they could absorb replacement 
training. Full-time schools for this purpose 
were authorized in the summer of 1941. 
Both Camp Lee and Fort Warren estab- 

lished these schools, with separate Negro 
and white sections. Instruction was given 
in reading, writing, simple arithmetic, and 
current events. The program called for 
eight weeks of this special schooling. At the 
end of that time most of the trainees had 
acquired a sufficient understanding of 
English to follow directions and perform 
their military duties. 36 

The shift in training emphasis in the 
QMRTCs from units to individuals at the 
end of the first cycle did not result imme- 
diately in any fundamental changes in or- 
ganization or procedure. The tendency, 
however, was to make the training a little 
more general since the specific assignment 
of the individual was less certain than it 
had been for the first increment of trainees. 
In general, the plan of conducting basic 
military and technical instruction concur- 
rently, with one half of each day devoted 
to each type of training, was continued 
until after Pearl Harbor. However, it was 
found impractical to train some specialists, 
such as cooks or personnel for bakery units, 
in half-day periods. Special programs, 
therefore, were arranged for such special- 
ists, who were permitted to complete their 
basic military training during the first half 
of their thirteen-week training period and 
then to devote the second half to their 
specialist training. 37 

More flexible organizational arrange- 

™ (1) Ltr, TAG to TQMG, et at., 2 Jun 41, sub: 
Trig of Second Increment of Selectees at RTCs, AG 
320.71 (5-28-41) MT-C. (2) Mathews, Development of 
QMRTCs, pp. 25-26. (3) Freedman, General Aspects 
of the Trainin g Progra m. Camp Lee, pp. 18-19. 

15 See above TCh. Vj Classification by Occupation Skill. 

:,B (1) Ibid. (2) MTP 20-1, 17 Jul 41, sub: MTPfor 
Special Tng Units at RTCs. (3) Rpt, CG Camp Lee 
OMRTC for TQMG, 8 Jan 42, sub: Progress Rpt for 

MTP 10-2, 25 Jul 41, sub: MTP for 
QMRTCs. (2) Freedman, General Aspects of the 
Training Program, Camp Lee, p. 23. (3) Mathews, 
Development of QMRTCs , pp. 26-27. 



merits became possible at the centers be- 
ginning in the fall of 1941 when the War 
Department rescinded the original T/O 
and delegated authority to the chief of 
each arm and service to prepare his own 
T/O for the replacement training centers 
in his command. Under the new system, 
the General Staff allotted officers and en- 
listed personnel to the QMRTC's for 
training overhead on the basis of their 
training capacities, and each center deter- 
mined, subject to the approval of The 
Quartermaster General, how they could 
be utilized to the best advantage. 38 

The fact that the arrival of recruits from 
the reception centers was staggered com- 
plicated the training problem and made it 
necessary to start new technical training 
classes at frequent intervals. Fort Warren 
adopted the procedure of starting a new 
training period on the first of each month. 
Recruits who arrived before the middle of 
the month were given intensified training 
in an effort to have them complete the 
course with those who had started on the 
first. Those arriving after the middle of the 
month were held over and trained in basic 
military subjects while awaiting the start 
of the next period. Gamp Lee solved the 
problem by starting new classes at two- 
week intervals. The two centers also dif- 
fered in regard to organization for tech- 
nical training. Fort Warren continued the 
policy of assigning recruits with similar 
classifications to the same company or 
companies. Camp Lee, however, dropped 
that procedure in October 1941 and began 
assigning recruits to training companies 
without regard to their occupational spe- 
cialties. Thus the training company re- 
mained the administrative unit for 
housing, feeding, and basic military train- 
ing, but the members were assigned to 
technical training classes as individuals. 39 

Impact of the War Upon the 
Training Program 

The entrance of the United States into 
the war created many additional problems 
for the QMRTC's. The most critical one 
concerned the question of how to meet the 
sharply increased requirements for re- 
placements without materially lowering 
training standards. One solution, as pro- 
posed by the War Department in a plan- 
ning project drawn up three months before 
Pearl Harbor, would have been to increase 
the number of replacement training cen- 
ters. This would have required additional 
administrative and instructor personnel 
and would have resulted in delay until the 
new centers could be built. Consequently 
when the crisis actually arose this proposal 
was rejected on the grounds that it was es- 
sential to conserve overhead personnel and 
to keep new construction at an absolute 
minimum. 40 It was decided instead to 
make more intensive use of the existing 
centers and to reduce the length of the 
training period from thirteen to eight 
weeks. Moreover, the QMRTC's were in- 
structed to eliminate any team training 
that was being carried on and to concen- 
trate completely upon the training of in- 
dividuals. All courses were ordered cut to 
the barest essentials. 

Under the eight-week training program, 
the War Department specified that the 
centers should devote full time during the 
first four weeks to basic military training, 
and reserve the final four weeks for tech- 
nical instruction. The purpose of this was 

3K Ltr, TAG to TQMG, el at, 2 Sep 41. sub: T/O 
for RTCs. AG 320.2 (8-20-41) PC-C. 

19 Mathews, Development ofQMRTCs, pp. 27-28. 

40 For a more detailed account of the planning proj- 
ect, see Mathews, Development of QMRTCs, pp. 3 l —33. 



to make certain that the trainees would 
complete their basic military training as 
quickly as possible and be available, if 
necessary, for assignment to units. Thus 
they would possess the fundamental 
knowledge to fill in at least as basics in any 
unit in which they were needed. This 
meant that technical training was rele- 
gated to second priority for the time being. 
Camp Lee was able to comply with the 
provision immediately, but a shortage of 
technical training facilities compelled Fort 
Warren to continue the split-day training 
system until May 1942. 41 

The eight-week training program was 
strictly an emergency measure, and in 
February 1942 the War Department di- 
rected the centers at Camp Lee and Fort 
Warren to undertake a gradual return to 
a thirteen-week schedule. 42 The new pro- 
gram for training Quartermaster enlisted 
replacements varied considerably, how- 
ever, from the original thirteen-week pro- 
gram. It provided for four weeks of basic 
military training followed by eight weeks 
of technical training and one week of basic 
military procedure. Training under the 
new schedule began for some of the men 
as early as March 1942. By the middle of 
July the new program was in full oper- 
ation at both installations for training all 
Quartermaster replacements except motor 
specialists, who by special authority re- 
mained on the eight-week schedule be- 
cause personnel requirements in this field 
were greater than the QMRTCs could 
supply even by housing many of the 
trainees in tents. Although third and 
fourth echelon maintenance functions had 
already been transferred to the Ordnance 
Department, the shortage of Ordnance 
training facilities made it necessary for the 
QMRTCs to continue to train large 
quotas of apprentice and general mechan- 

ics and other allied specialists for the re- 
mainder of the year. 43 

The situation created by having training 
periods of different lengths for supply and 
motor trainees caused serious administra- 
tive difficulties, particularly at Camp Lee. 

Under the existing system of classification 
and assignment, men were being assigned to 
companies as they came, with no attention 
given to the types of specialists or period they 
were to train. Such a system provided maxi- 
mum utilization of barracks capacity, the 
foremost criterion at the moment. But with 
men remaining in the same company until 
completion of training, groups would be 
shipped from companies at various stages, 
leaving vacancies. Capacity requirements 
could be fulfilled only by filling in a new 
stage of training or by squeezing companies 
together. Both were bad from the standpoint 
of morale, efficiency, the supervision of train- 
ing, and the maintenance of records. 44 

The shorter period for motor training 
did not remain in effect long, for in No- 
vember 1942 a return to the universal 
thirteen-week training period was di- 
rected. 45 In the meantime, Camp Lee had 
solved many of its administrative problems 
by organizing trainees into separate mili- 
tary and technical training companies. 
Under this system, all incoming recruits 
were assigned to military training com- 
panies and remained with them through- 
out the period of basic military training. 

41 ( I) Freedman, General Aspects of the Training 
Program, Camp Lee. p. 25. (2) Freedman. General 
Aspects of the Training Program, Ft. Warren, p. 9. 

* 2 Ltr, TAG to TQMG, el al., 28 Feb 42, sub: In- 
crease in Period ofTng at RTCs, AG 320.2 (2-3-42) 

" L J tr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to CGs, 
Camp Lee and Ft. Warren QMRTCs, 16 Jul 42, sub: 
Tng of QM EM, 353.01. 

44 Freedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram. Camp Lee, p. 29. 

15 Ltr, Mil Tng Div, OQMG, to CGs Camp Lee 
and Ft. Warren QMRTCs, 14 Nov 42, sub: Tng Di- 
rective No. 1 0. 



The trainees then were transferred to tech- 
nical training companies — either' to a 
motor unit or a supply unit in accordance 
with their specialties. These companies 
conducted all of the training during the 
technical training phase. At Fort Warren, 
on the other hand, trainees were assigned 
to a particular company and remained 
with it through both their basic military 
and their technical training. This plan was 
followed until the spring of 1943 when 
Fort Warren adopted the Camp Lee sys- 
tem of separate military and technical 
training companies. 46 

The huge expansion at the Camp Lee 
QMRTC had made it necessary to add 
three regiments and greatly increase the 
size of training companies in April 1942. 
This created a problem in training super- 
vision that was solved by organizing the 
center's eight regiments into three bri- 
gades. Two of the brigades were comprised 
of three white regiments each, while the 
third was comprised of the two Negro regi- 
ments. Three of the center's most experi- 
enced officers were selected as brigade 
commanders, and among their functions 
was that of conducting tests to determine 
the progress in training. The brigade sys- 
tem was adopted about a year later at 
Fort Warren. 47 

The impact of the war brought numer- 
ous other developments at the QMRTC's 
in 1942. The training doctrine was revised 
frequently to meet the transition from 
emergency to actual war and to provide 
the type of training that would produce 
Quartermaster soldiers who would be pre- 
pared to fight if the need arose. The latest 
teaching techniques were adopted, and 
great strides were made in the use of films 
and other training aids in an effort to 
speed up the training process. Even the 
number of functions performed by the 

centers underwent a marked increase. 
Some of the additional functions origi- 
nated with the introduction of new subject 
matter into the courses, while others grew 
out of the attempt to improve training 
methods and procedures. It was necessary, 
for example, to establish courses for train- 
ing new instructors and improving the 
caliber of the teaching of older ones. An- 
other important development was the 
creation at each of the centers of a tech- 
nical training service. Its principal func- 
tions were to develop training methods, 
materials, and procedures and to co-ordi- 
nate them, with those developed at the 
Quartermaster School; to determine the 
number and types of instructors required; 
and to select, train, and guide the in- 
structors. 48 

More emphasis was placed upon the 
function of training illiterates and others 
who required special attention. Such 
trainees at the beginning of the program in 
1941 had constituted only a small per- 
centage of the total personnel to be 
trained, and they had remained with their 
basic companies while receiving special in- 
struction at the elementary schools. Later 
on, as their number and percentage grew 
they were separated from the regular 
trainees and organized into special train- 
ing units which fed, housed, and clothed 
the men, and provided the elementary 
training necessary to remedy their defi- 

16 (1) Freedman, General Aspects of the Training 
Program, Camp Lee, pp. 30-31. (2) Freedman, Gen- 
eral Aspects of the Training Program, Ft. Warren, pp. 


17 (1) Freedman, General Aspects of the Training 
Program, Ft. Warren, p. 14. (2) Freedman, General 
Aspects of the Training Program, Camp Lee, pp. 32- 

4S (1) Ltr, Col McReynolds, OQMG, to CGs Camp 
Lee and Ft. Warren QMRTCs, 21 Oct 42, sub: In- 
structor Tng Schools. (2) Ltr, McReynolds to same, 9 
Oct 42, sub: Establishment of Tech Tng Sv. 



ciencies. This program reached a peak 
during the summer of 1942, but the bur- 
den finally was lightened in August of that 
year when the War Department lowered 
the maximum percentage of trainees of 
this type who were to be instructed. A year 
later the QMRTC's were relieved com- 
pletely of the responsibility for this train- 
ing when the function was transferred to 
the reception' centers. 49 

The expansion of functions at the centers 
extended beyond those which benefited 
enlisted trainees participating in the gen- 
eral program. Both Camp Lee and Fort 
Warren inaugurated refresher courses for 
officers and ROTC graduates. At Fort 
Warren a branch of the OCS was opened 
and an officers' replacement pool was 
established. Courses for cadres and for 
trainees who were awaiting assignment to 
the OCS were among the other additions 
made to the program of the two centers 
during the year. By the end of 1942 the 
combined capacity of the two QMRTC's 
had been increased to more than 40,000. 50 

Throughout most of 1942 the QMRTC's 
had been under extremely heavy pressure 
to turn out replacements for the many new 
units hurriedly formed to meet the critical 
situation resulting from the attack upon 
Pearl Harbor. By the beginning of 1943, 
however, the pressure had begun to sub- 
side. The expansion rate of the Army had 
decreased to a marked degree and, with 
mobilization nearing its final stages, re- 
quirements for replacements were declin- 
ing toward the level at which they would 
have to be kept for strictly maintenance 
purposes. All training was back on the 
thirteen-week schedule, and the centers 
were able to operate under more nearly 
normal conditions. 

The reduction in Quartermaster re- 
quirements permitted the QMRTC's not 

only to continue training Ordnance per- 
sonnel, but also to make their facilities 
available for an extensive program for 
training enlisted men in the AAF and the 
Adjutant General's Department. Although 
the majority of the men trained for the 
Ordnance Department in 1943 were auto 
mechanics, for whom the QMRTC's pro- 
vided only basic military training, the cen- 
ters conducted the full thirteen-week 
program for other Ordnance personnel, 
including cooks, mess stewards, clerks, car- 
penters, chauffeurs, packers and craters, 
electricians, machinists, and welders. By 
the end of April 1943, however, the facil- 
ities of the Ordnance Department had be- 
come adequate for its own needs and 
this training was discontinued at the 
QMRTC's. The training for the AAF, 
though, continued throughout 1943 and 
more than 15,000 specialists were trained 
for that command by the Camp Lee and 
Fort Warren centers. These included car- 
penters, supply clerks, cooks, mess ser- 
geants, motor operators, and plumbers. 
For the Adjutant General's Department 
only basic military training was con- 
ducted, and this program continued 
throught the first half of 1944. 51 

Two other major developments in 1943 
were outgrowths of the lowered require- 
ments for Quartermaster replacements. 
One was the discontinuance of the Fort 
Warren QMRTC after two and a half 
years of existence during which the center 
graduated more than 122,000 specialists 
trained in the diverse fields of motor and 

J!l (1) See above JCh. V| Classification by Intellectual 
Capacity. (2) Mathews, Development o/QMRTCs, p. 41. 
(3) For a detailed account of this special training, see 
Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and Cadres, 
Pt. I, App. 5. 

50 Mathews, Development o/QMRTCs, pp. 41-42, 57. 

51 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. 1, pp. 58-59. 



supply operations. 52 Although the inacti- 
vation began on 1 July and no new 
trainees were received after that date, it 
was the middle of October before the cen- 
ter actually was discontinued. The other 
development was the lengthening of the 
training period, effective in August, from 
thirteen weeks to seventeen weeks as pre- 
scribed by the ASF for the training of all 
enlisted men in that command because of 
the general reduction in requirements for 
trained personnel. The new program 
placed much greater emphasis upon basic 
military training and extended the period 
of this phase to six weeks. This was fol- 
lowed by the customary eight weeks of 
technical training, and then by an addi- 
tional three weeks of team or field training. 
The later period was designed to allow 
practical application under field condi- 
tions of theoretical military and technical 
instruction presented in the preceding 
fourteen weeks and to train each man as 
a member of a team so that when he joined 
a unit in a theater he would have a better 
concept of his place in the organization. 53 

The adoption of this new program made 
it necessary for the remaining QMRTC at 
Camp Lee to make several changes in its 
training organization. A new office, that 
of director of field training, was created 
and a new type of training organization — 
the pool company — was established to 
process the trainees and to handle the ad- 
ministrative details during the field train- 
ing phase. Under this new schedule, 
trainees were assigned first to a basic mili- 
tary company, then moved to a technical 
training company, and finally transferred 
to the pool company. 

The pool companies, in which Negro 
and white units were segregated, handled 
all field training functions and provided 
the final processing before the men were 

shipped from the center. The field training 
program was carried out under simulated 
tactical conditions. The course of instruc- 
tion for the first week included such sub- 
jects as compass problems, village fighting, 
and camouflage. For the final two weeks 
the trainees were taken to the A. P. Hill 
Military Reservation, about seventy miles 
from Camp Lee, for combined training in 
basic military and technical activities in 
the field. 54 

In many respects the fall of 1943 was 
one of the most successful periods in the 
history of Quartermaster replacement 
training operations. By then, all of the 
training was centered at one installation, 
more time was available for training the 
men, both the basic military and the tech- 
nical training organizations were function- 
ing under well-tried methods, and the 
program had been rounded out by the ad- 
dition of three weeks of field training. 
Moreover, operations were not yet com- 
plicated by the more varied types of train- 
ing that were required later in the war. 

Revisions in Replacement Requirements 

The year 1944 brought a series of new 
problems that resulted in sweeping 
changes affecting not only the organiza- 
tional structure of the Camp Lee QMRTC, 
but also the scope and mission of its train- 
ing program, the type of personnel to be 
trained, and even the designation of the 

One of these problems arose from the 
fact that the strength of the Army at the 
beginning of 1944 was near its authorized 

5 2 Freedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram, Ft. Warren, p. 17. 

53 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Repls, Fillers, and 
Cadres, Pt. 1, pp. 60-61. 

54 Freedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram, Camp Lee, p. 40. 



ceiling, a situation that tended to alter the 
mission of the QMRTC. Considerably 
fewer recruits were being received from 
reception centers, and in order to procure 
personnel for the new types of units or spe- 
cialists required by the shifting course of 
the war or changing strategy, it became 
necessary either to inactivate units not 
needed for early shipment overseas or to 
retrain existing specialists. 

Retraining became a regular function 
of the QMRTC early in January. The first 
instructions specified that retraining at the 
beginning would absorb a trainee strength 
of 1,800 including officers and men, or 
about 10 percent of the total center capac- 
ity of 18,200. It was pointed out, however, 
that the new function would grow rapidly 
and eventually rival the replacement 
training program in importance. Person- 
nel to be retrained included specialists 
returned from overseas under the Army's 
rotation policy and those from inactivated 
units, from Quartermaster installations in 
the zone of interior, and from surpluses 
in the service commands. 55 

Among the other changes that became 
effective early in 1944 was the establish- 
ment of a unit training program for petrol- 
eum laboratory units, laundry units, 
service companies, headquarters and 
headquarters companies for base depots, 
and postal units. The postal units were 
under the jurisdiction of The Adjutant 
General, but The Quartermaster General 
was given the responsibility for their train- 
ing. At the same time, the trainee capacity 
of the center devoted to the basic training 
of Adjutant General personnel was in- 
creased from 1,800 to 4,000. 5fi 

The changes in functions were accom- 
panied by revisions in the center's train- 
ing structure. The three phases of train- 
ing — supply, motor, and field — which 

previously had been conducted under 
separate direction, were integrated into 
one technical and field training organiza- 
tion under a single director in January 
1944. About two months later, however, 
field training was again placed under a 
separate director, but motor and supply 
training remained combined under a di- 
rector of technical training. 57 

A major reorganization began in April 
when the Commanding General, ASF, 
ordered the establishment of ASF training 
centers (ASFTC's) to unify and integrate 
all training in the technical services. 58 Al- 
though this precipitated widespread 
changes, including the redesignation of the 
QMRTC as an ASFTC, the Camp Lee 
center remained under the supervision of 
The Quartermaster General and the train- 
ing continued to be predominantly for 
Quartermaster personnel. The Fort War- 
ren center was also redesignated an 
ASFTC, and the training of replacements, 
which had been discontinued there seven 
months earlier when the installation be- 
came a unit training center, was resumed. 

The reorganization called for the stand- 
ardization of all basic military training 
within the ASF and of such technical 
training as was common to the technical 
services. Training terminology also was 
standardized. The seventeen-week pro- 
gram as a whole became known officially 
as basic training. The first phase of this 
program, generally six weeks in length, 
was designated as basic military training. 
The second phase, generally eight weeks 

7 < : ' Ltr, Brig Gen Wilbur R. McReynolds, OQMG, 
to CG Camp Lee, 1 1 Jan 44, sub: 0.q*n of Camp Lee 
forTng Program, 1944, 353. 

57 Freedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram, Camp Lee, pp. 48-50. 

58 ASF Cir 104, Sec. Ill, 15 Apr 44, sub: Plan for 
Tng Certain ASF EM. 



in length, was redesignated as basic tech- 
nical training. The final three weeks of the 
program were designated in one of two 
ways, in accordance with the type of train- 
ing conducted. When the trainees were 
formed into teams or groups and trained 
as loss replacements under field conditions 
the period was termed basic team training, 
but when they were assembled into a com- 
plete unit and trained as an official organ- 
ization the period was designated as basic 
unit training. 

One of the most important aspects of the 
reorganization was the introduction of the 
preactivation training program, which 
provided that all recruits were to be 
trained first as individuals before being as- 
signed to units for unit training. This 
marked the abandonment of the old sys- 
tem whereby fillers for newly activated 
units frequently were supplied directly 
from reception centers. The new plan in- 
sured that enlisted men would receive a 
minimum of fourteen weeks of training as 
individuals, including six weeks of basic 
military training and eight weeks of basic 
technical training, prior to their utilization 
as overseas loss replacements or as fillers for 
newly activated units. At the conclusion of 
their preactivation training phase, the en- 
listed men selected as loss replacements re- 
ceived an additional three weeks of basic 
team training, while those assigned to new 
units as fillers received an additional six 
weeks of basic unit training, 

The process for regulating the flow of 
trainees at the ASFTC's was quite com- 
plex under the varied training procedures. 
Loss replacements were ordered into the 
center by The Adjutant General in ac- 
cordance with requirements established by 
G-3. The Quartermaster General drew up 
the quotas, based upon these require- 
ments, and issued a directive to the center 

specifying the number to be trained in 
each type of specialty. In the case of units, 
ASF headquarters determined the par- 
ticular types needed and the availability of 
personnel and equipment. These data 
were embodied in a preactivation order to 
The Quartermaster General, who set up 
the quotas and issued the directives to the 
center. The personnel required for the 
units was ordered into the center by The 
Adjutant General. Personnel for other 
types of training, such as retraining, was 
ordered into the center without quotas and 
the training proceeded in accordance with 
priority requirements. 59 

When the preactivation training began 
in mid-June, it increased to seven the dif- 
ferent categories in which training was 
being conducted at the Camp Lee ASFTC. 
The other six were basic military, basic 
technical, basic military retraining, basic 
technical retraining, basic team training, 
and training of activated units. The com- 
plexity of this program was in sharp con- 
trast with that which had existed during 
the earlier part of the war when the center 
had been confronted with the compara- 
tively simple problem of training only 
filler and loss replacements. Although in 
the meantime it had been redesignated as 
an ASFTC, the Camp Lee center still was 
organized on a regimental basis with seven 
regiments — four white and two Negro 
regiments and one unit training regiment. 
Inasmuch as each regiment usually had an 
assortment of trainees in all seven cate- 
gories of training, there was much dupli- 
cation of effort and waste of overhead per- 
sonnel at a time when a serious manpower 
shortage existed. Moreover, requirements 
shifted so rapidly that training loads were 
almost constantly fluctuating from one 

Freedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram, Camp Lee, p. 47. 



category to another. It became obvious 
during the summer of 1944 that a more 
flexible organization was necessary if ef- 
fective training was to be given. 60 

Consequently, a complete reorganiza- 
tion took place on 1 September, influenc- 
ing every phase of the center's operations. 
The regimental training system, which 
had been employed since the inception of 
the center, was replaced by one consisting 
of three groups. One group was organized 
to instruct white troops in both basic mili- 
tary and basic technical training, another 
to perform the same function for Negroes, 
and a unit training group to prepare units 
for extended field service. This reorganiza- 
tion simplified operating procedures, in- 
sured more uniform standards of instruc- 
tion, and resulted in a considerable saving 
in overhead personnel. With administra- 
tive duties controlled centrally, many 
officers and enlisted men who previously 
had been engaged in administrative work 
within the seven regiments were made 
available for training purposes or were re- 
leased for duty overseas. 61 

By this time, with more and more men 
being returned from overseas and increas- 
ing numbers from zone of interior installa- 
tions being prepared for duty in the 
theaters, retraining had become the most 
pressing problem. Although retraining 
provided the opportunity to evaluate pre- 
vious training, it also presented serious 
difficulties, particularly in giving instruc- 
tion in basic military retraining. 

At best it is a thankless task for a retrainee 
to begin a training cycle after he has com- 
pleted one in the early stages of his army 
career. It is difficult for a man who has been 
subjected to fire, who has had active part in 
combat in perhaps another arm of the serv- 
ice, to readjust himself to take a basic course 
which he regards as "fundamental rookie 
training." The problem is essentially a selling 

problem. Lack of interest on the part of re- 
trainees, exaggerated promises that were 
made at other stations to mollify their ship- 
ments to our Center, failure to be paid for a 
considerable period of time, lack of adequate 
furloughs and fear of losing ratings are all 
problems peculiar to the retrainees. . . . 62 

All of this added up to the fact that the 
retrainee arrived at the ASFTC in low 
spirits and in an antagonistic mood. The 
center, therefore, was confronted first with 
the task of building morale and changing 
the attitude of the men so that they would 
be receptive to instruction. Special efforts 
were made to bolster morale by giving 
each man an opportunity to state his 
grievances frankly and then attempting to 
resolve them quickly. A liberal policy was 
adopted in all dealings with these men. 
Furloughs were granted whenever possible, 
steps were taken to expedite their pay, and 
any clothing needed was issued promptly. 
The retrainees were grouped according to 
grade and previous experience to counter- 
act any impression that they were being 
treated as rookies. 

The necessity for retraining was ex- 
plained in detail to the men during their 
orientation. Noncommissioned officers 
were assured that there would be no re- 
ductions in grade except for disciplinary 
reasons. To avoid demoralization resulting 
from unnecessary repetition of training, 
tests were given the retrainees soon after 
their arrival to determine whether they 
needed further basic military training. 
Those achieving a stipulated grade were 
transferred immediately to technical train- 
ing, while those falling below this grade 

00 Capt K. H. Dodd, Basic Military Training. Hq 
ASFTC, Camp Lee, Va., July 1944-September 1945 
(Camp Lee hist rpt, Jun 46), pp. 1-2. (Hereafter cited 
as Dodd, Basic Mil Tng.) 

61 Ibid., pp. 2-3. 

62 Ibid., App. A. 



were shown their shortcomings and made 
to realize that they actually needed the 
training. The personal touch was em- 
phasized, with company commanders of- 
fering to help the men solve their individ- 
ual problems. The retrainees were segre- 
gated in accordance with the degree of 
their advancement in order to avoid bore- 
some repetition of elementary instruction. 
The same careful screening was employed 
in technical training, with each retrainee 
required to take only the portion of the 
course that his test showed he needed. In 
this way many hours of training were 
saved, and retrainees were made available 
for assignment at the earliest possible 
date. 63 

Another special problem in 1944 con- 
cerned the training of limited-assignment 
personnel for jobs in zone of interior in- 
stallations so that they could relieve gen- 
eral-service men for service overseas. In 
the face of the growing manpower short- 
age, the Army objective was to prepare all 
able-bodied men for duty in the theaters 
and to fill as many jobs as possible in this 
country with limited-assignment person- 
nel, Wacs, and civilians. The training of 
limited-assignment personnel was a special 
problem for several reasons. One of these 
was that, because of their physical limita- 
tions, the men had to be placed in segre- 
gated units for their basic military train- 
ing. They were transferred to technical 
training individually, whenever the unit 
commander determined that a man had 
completed the amount of training com- 
mensurate with his physical condition. 
Another reason for the difficulty was that 
all courses had been designed from the be- 
ginning of the war to meet the one objec- 
tive of preparing men for service in the 
theaters, while limited-assignment person- 
nel had to be instructed specifically for 

duty in zone of interior installations. 

It is evident that the lack of officers with 
post quartermaster experience has a tendency 
to affect our courses and training because of 
lack of realization of what job and what type 
of training is needed for post, camp, and sta- 
tion duty. This is just the reverse of the situ- 
ation three years ago in that we knew very 
little at that time about theaters of operation 
requirements and our training was faulty be- 
cause we were teaching post, camp, and sta- 
tion duties in place of theater of operation 
duties. 04 

At the time of their establishment it had 
been assumed that the replacement train- 
ing centers through their normal training 
processes would produce an adequate 
number of potential leaders to serve as 
noncommissioned officers in newly acti- 
vated units. This proved to be a fallacy, 
and by 1944 a serious shortage of qualified 
noncommissioned officers had developed. 
To overcome this shortage, insofar as the 
QMC was concerned, steps were taken in 
the spring of that year to establish a Lead- 
ership Training Course at Camp Lee. 
Candidates were selected from outstanding 
trainees who had completed their basic 
military and technical training and had 
exhibited sufficient qualities of leadership 
to be considered potential noncommis- 
sioned officers. 

The program called for nine weeks of 
training. The first three weeks were de- 
voted to instruction in teaching methods 
and duties of noncommissioned officers. 
During the final six weeks the students 
were appointed acting corporals and as- 
signed to training companies in order to 
give them practical experience. The name 
of the course was changed to Noncommis- 

03 Ibid.. App. A. 

s+ Ltr, Gen McRcynolds, OQMG, to CO ASFTC, 
Gamp Lee, 26 Apr 44, sub: General Tng Instructions, 




sioned Officer School in Troop Leadership 
in the fall of 1944 when the regimental 
training system of the center was replaced 
by a group organization. Actually, there 
were two of these schools at first, one for 
whites and the other for Negroes, but be- 
fore the end of 1944 the number of Ne- 
groes had declined to such an extent that 
the two schools were combined and came 
to be known simply as the Troop Leader- 
ship School. 65 

Redeployment Training 

Training programs before 1945 had 
been general in nature because they were 
designed to prepare individuals and units 
for operations against different enemies in 
widely scattered parts of the world. With 
victory in Europe finally assured, atten- 
tion was turned to the task of adapting the 
programs specifically to the war against 
Japan. As early as October 1944 the War 
Department issued a directive to the ASF 
and the other two major commands in- 
structing them to prepare definite plans 
for training new inductees and redeployed 
personnel and units after the defeat of 

The directive specified that the term re- 
deployment training was to be used to 
designate the training conducted in the 
United States for individuals and organi- 
zations returned from other combat areas 
for eventual redeployment to the Pacific 
theater, as distinguished from the training 
of new inductees and newly activated 
units. Further use of the term retraining 
was banned in recognition of the fact that 
it was resented by veterans returning from 
overseas. The directive also stipulated that 
the training week of redeployed personnel 
was to be limited to forty-four hours, in 
contrast to the regular forty-eight hours. 66 

In compliance with this directive, the 
ASF instructed the chiefs of the technical 
services in December 1944 to revise the 
basic technical and basic team training 
phases of their replacement training pro- 
grams. It was the middle of April 1945, 
however, before the new programs became 
effective. From then until V-J Day Quar- 
termaster training at the Camp Lee and 
Fort Warren ASFTC's was directed pri- 
marily toward the production of highly 
skilled replacements for the Quartermas- 
ter organizations that were to be rede- 
ployed from the European theater and 
other combat areas to the Pacific for final 
operations against Japan. 67 

The ASF instituted several innovations 
in its revised military training policy. One 
of these was a three-week refresher course, 
which was designed primarily to bring 
those with earlier training up to the stand- 
ards established for the six-week basic 
military training phase. The program was 
elastic enough to meet the special needs of 
the individuals undergoing redeployment 
training in that it provided forty-eight 
hours of instruction each week for men 
with previous training who had no over- 
seas experience, but only forty-four hours 
for redeployed personnel from the theaters, 
who were excused from Saturday after- 
noon schedules. 

Another change in the basic military 
training phase was the stipulation that the 

fir ' (1) Ltr, Gen McReynolds. OQMG, to CG Camp 
Lee, 21 Mar 44, sub: Establishment of a Leadership 
Trig Course. (2) Dodd, Basic Mil Tng, pp. 26-30. (3) 
Remarks, Maj Gen Ray E. Porter, WDGS, at Tng 
Conf, Camp Claiborne. La., 10-12 Apr 44. 

Memo, Gen Porter, ACofS G-3, for CGs ASF, 
AAF, and AGF, 5 Oct 44, sub: Tng After the Defeat 
of Germany. 

67 (1) Memo, Dir of Mil Tng, ASF, for TQMG 
et al., 20 Dec 44, sub: Tng After the Defeat of Ger- 
many. (2) For a detailed analysis of the MTPs in 
1945, see Young, Mobil Tng Plans, pp. 181-207. 



final week of the six-week program be 
spent in field bivouac. The men received 
at the ASFTC were screened by a process 
of interview and examination of their rec- 
ords to determine their physical and men- 
tal qualifications, and then each man was 
assigned to either six weeks of basic mili- 
tary training or three weeks of refresher 
training, or he was exempted from any 
further training in accordance with his 
new classification. In all basic military 
training under the redeployment pro- 
gram, stress was placed on subjects par- 
ticularly applicable to Pacific warfare 
such as swimming, security against sur- 
prise attack, and Japanese weapons and 
tactics. 88 

The technical training program pre- 
pared by The Quartermaster General for 
the redeployment period was substantially 
the same as that outlined in the preactiva- 
tion training programs of 1944, except for 
special emphasis on subjects that would 
prepare enlisted specialists for operations 
in the Far East. All Quartermaster en- 
listed men — those with experience in the 
zone of interior or overseas, as well as new 
recruits — were required to complete eight 
weeks of basic technical training and three 
weeks of basic team training before they 
could be sent to the Pacific theater. Special 
provisions were made, however, to give 
specialists full credit for previous training 
or experience. Thus when tests and inter- 
views indicated that individuals were qual- 
ified in a required military occupational 
specialty they were exempted from further 
training, while those who were partially 
qualified by reason of previous civilian or 
military training or by experience were re- 
quired to take only the additional instruc- 
tion necessary to meet the requirements. 

Although this system, which came to be 
known as fractional training, was a signifi- 

cant feature of the redeployment program, 
it was not new. It had been followed at 
Camp Lee during the previous year in 
connection with the retraining program. 
One feature that was new was the intro- 
duction of such subjects as waterproofing 
and moisture-proofing to the technical 
courses in order to teach Quartermaster 
specialists how to take care of tools, ma- 
chinery, and equipment, and how to pro- 
tect supplies under the damp and ex- 
tremely hot climatic conditions of the 
Pacific. 69 

The need for redeployment training 
ended abruptly with the surrender of 
Japan in August 1945. At that time most 
of the men who were scheduled to under- 
go this training were still in Europe. The 
following month the mobilization training 
programs were revised once more, this 
time to prepare replacements for occupa- 
tion duty. 70 

Changes in Basic Military Training 

The basic military training given Quar- 
termaster soldiers in the latter part of the 
war differed widely in character and scope 
from that administered in the emergency 
period or even during the first year after 
Pearl Harbor. The modifications that 
were made were the result of the change 
in the status of supply troops that evolved 
from wartime experience. The early pro- 
grams at the Camp Lee and Fort Warren 
QMRTC's emphasized such peacetime 
training subjects as dismounted drill, mili- 
tary courtesy and discipline, sanitation 
and first aid, map reading, care of clothing 

MTP 21-4, 10 Mar 45, sub: MTP for Enlisted 
Pers of the ASF. 

6 " MTP 10-1, 15 Apr 45, sub: QM MTPs for QM 
Units at Tng Centers and for Repls at Repl Centers. 

7,1 MTP, 10-1, 20 Sep 45, sub: MTP for QM En- 
listed Pers of the ASF. 



and equipment, and physical drill. Pistol 
familiarization firing was included, as was 
rifle marksmanship, but the schedule 
called for only a few hours of preparatory 
training and range firing. 71 These pro- 
grams were notable for their lack of tacti- 
cal infantry training subjects that would 
prepare Quartermaster personnel for serv- 
ice under combat conditions, such as 
Army orientation, bayonet training, famil- 
iarization and field firing of the carbine, 
cover and movement, extended order drill, 
hasty field fortifications, infiltration and 
combat course training, demolition train- 
ing, mines and booby traps, defense 
against air and mechanized attack, and 
tactical scouting and patrolling. 

These subjects and other features had 
been added by the spring of 1944, 72 but 
the elaborate basic military training pro- 
gram, which by then was standard for all 
ASF enlisted personnel, had been devel- 
oped gradually since 1940. The develop- 
ment was particularly slow at first for a 
number of reasons. For one thing, there 
had been repeated delays in preparing 
Quartermaster mobilization training pro- 
grams during the emergency period be- 
cause the Quartermaster School, with its 
limited number of personnel and heavy 
teaching load, was reluctant to undertake 
the task, while the OQMG lacked the ex- 
perienced training personnel to assume 
the responsibility. Consequently, the pro- 
grams were not formulated as rapidly as 
they might otherwise have been. During 
the critical period following Pearl Harbor, 
the first objective was to train the largest 
number of men possible in the shortest 
time possible, and there was little oppor- 
tunity to make drastic changes in basic 
doctrine. Another reason was that it was 
difficult for the War Department, whose 
function it was to prepare the mobilization 

training programs upon which the various 
installations based their detailed training 
schedules, to determine in advance the 
exact extent of the role the Quartermaster 
soldier would play in a global war. It was 
about the middle of 1943 before any reli- 
able experience data were available for es- 
tablishing training requirements. More- 
over, training facilities and equipment 
were extremely scarce during the early 
days of the war and this further handi- 
capped the expansion of the program. 

Still another factor was that the Corps, 
because its training for years had been de- 
voted to producing post quartermasters, 
was severely lacking in personnel capable 
of conducting field training. This was evi- 
denced by the caliber of the early cadres 
sent to the QMRTC's. 

. . . they were for the most part unqualified 
for the jobs they were expected to perform. 
Few had any type of basic military experi- 
ence, almost none had fired the various 
weapons, and most were considered the un- 
desirables and castoffs of various Regular 
Army units." 

The early deficiencies of the training 
program were overcome as rapidly as pos- 
sible after the country entered the war. To 
facilitate instruction and give the trainees 
the most appropriate environment for 
practical military instruction, training was 
removed insofar as possible from the class- 
room and drill field to wooded training 
areas, which were equipped eventually 
with demonstration areas, infiltration 
courses, regimental theaters, practice fir- 
ing ranges of various types, and virtually 

71 MTP 10-2, 25 Jul 41, sub: QM MTPs for QM 
Enlisted Repls at QMRTCs. 

" MTP 21-4, 10 Mar 45, sub: MTP for Enlisted 
Pers of the ASF. 

73 Lt William H. Fickes, Basic Military Training 
(Camp Lee ASFTC hist rpt, Mar 45), p. 1 3. (Here- 
after cited as Fickes, Basic Mil Tng.) 



every other kind of facility for basic mili- 
tary training. Training films and film strips 
had been introduced in a small way at the 
QMRTC's during the first training cycle, 
and their use was gradually expanded un- 
til practically every subject was supple- 
mented by this type of visual aid. 74 Nu- 
merous other kinds of training aids also 
were employed in an effort to reduce the- 
oretical instruction to a minimum. By the 
fall of 1943 all instruction in basic military 
training was being made as realistic as 
possible. The battle inoculation course was 
being utilized to condition the men men- 
tally for combat operations by subjecting 
them to close overhead fire, battle sounds, 
and other conditions they were likely to 
encounter in the field. 

The progress of the trainees in absorb- 
ing instruction during the basic military 
training phase was ascertained by means 
of periodic tests. These tests, originated in 
the summer of 1941, had to be reformu- 
lated and improved almost constantly to 
keep pace with revisions in training pro- 
grams. During the greater part of the war, 
basic military testing included a battalion 
test at the end of the first two weeks, a regi- 
mental test at the end of the fourth week, 
and a brigade test at the conclusion of the 
basic military training period. 

The brigade test was the most compre- 
hensive and the most important of these 
tests because it determined whether or not 
the men had successfully completed this 
phase of training. More than fifty different 
mimeographed tests covering the basic 
military training field were developed by 
the brigade headquarters, and when the 
trainees appeared on the field they were 
unaware of which particular test they 
would face. Each test encompassed eight 
subjects, was conducted both verbally and 
by performance, and lasted for two hours: 

Some portions of the test were conducted 
by squads, others by platoons. Individual 
deficiencies were reported to the company 
commanders, who ordered the men to 
remedy their weaknesses by additional 
training, usually conducted after normal 
training hours. A progress chart was insti- 
tuted at Camp Lee in April 1943. Each 
squad leader maintained a chart showing 
the presence or absence of each trainee at 
each instructional period. Time lost by ab- 
sence was required to be made up in extra 
instructional periods. Eventually, individ- 
ual cards recording the satisfactory or un- 
satisfactory completion of each course 
were developed. 75 

A more reliable method of testing indi- 
viduals was established at Camp Lee early 
in 1945. It involved the use of a pictorial 
test consisting of 100 questions pertaining 
to all prescribed basic military subjects. 
Each question was of the best- answer type, 
with four possible answers depicted in pic- 
ture form. The papers were graded and 
evaluated by the Basic Military Testing 
Section of the center by means of an elec- 
trical accounting machine. The results 
were analyzed and an applicatory test was 
compiled, based on subjects in which er- 
rors were committed by one third or more 
of the group. 

Trainees whose papers on the pictorial 
test had been unsatisfactory were segre- 
gated into small groups for the applicatory 
test, during which individual performances 
were carefully checked. Those whose pro- 
ficiency had been rated as satisfactory in 
the pictorial test were divided into groups 
of twenty to twenty-five to participate in 
an applicatory critique conducted by the 

74 For a complete list of films used in basic military 
training at Camp Lee, see Fickes, Basic Mil Tng, App. 

75 Fickes, Basic Mil Tng, pp. 31-37. 



company officers and cadre, during which 
stress was placed on those subjects in 
which the pictorial test had revealed the 
company to be weakest. Results in the ap- 
plicatory phase of testing were consoli- 
dated with those in the pictorial phase, 
and personnel found deficient in part were 
required to make up those subjects in con- 
current basic training in a technical com- 
pany. The success of the method of testing 
developed at Camp Lee was indicated by 
the fact that it was adopted in whole or in 
part by other training centers over the 
country. 76 

Developments in Technical Training 

Technical training was handicapped 
even more than basic military training by 
the general shortage of equipment, lack of 
facilities, and other factors during the 
emergency period and the early part of 
the war. Any camp could construct obsta- 
cle courses, fox holes, and sand tables de- 
picting strategic defense positions, but it 
was not so easy to simulate a mobile bath 
unit or a shoe repair shop. Consequently, 
most of the early technical instruction had 
to be of a theoretical nature and was con- 
ducted in the classroom, rather than in 
the workshop, with pictures, films, and di- 
agrams taking the place of pieces of equip- 
ment. Tools and supplies also were in ex- 
tremely short supply. The refrigeration 
school at Fort Warren, for example, 
started with no charts, no data books, and 
no equipment, while the drafting school 
had one stylus and a twelve-inch rule. 77 
Courses for mechanics had to be conducted 
largely out of doors, or in tents, pending 
completion of shop buildings. Each pla- 
toon functioned as a class, and an instruc- 
tor, usually inexperienced, attempted to 

explain by word or" picture the technical 
operation of a complex machine. 

Even when the first training equipment 
arrived much of it was obsolete or unsuit- 
able. For instance, the first sterilizers made 
available to the sterilization and bath 
school at Camp Lee were mule-drawn, 
wood-burning or coal-burning vehicles of 
1908 vintage, in sharp contrast to the 
modern, motorized, highly intricate, gaso- 
line machines. 78 Similarly, the trucks uti- 
lized at first in the training of mechanics 
and drivers were either civilian or World 
War I types, quite unlike those produced 
for World War II. 

In addition to the early shortages of 
equipment, supplies, and facilities, there 
was also an extreme scarcity of experi- 
enced instructors. With Regular Army 
personnel spread thin, the burden of train- 
ing recruits fell upon inexperienced Re- 
serve officers and civilians, who were not 
familiar with field operations or newly de- 
veloped equipment. It was a case of the 
trainer having to learn while he was at- 
tempting to teach the trainee. 

Furthermore, technical training was 
hampered more than basic military train- 
ing when the total replacement training 
period was reduced to eight weeks shortly 
after Pearl Harbor. It was directed that 
the first four weeks be given over to basic 
military training. As a result, although 
Fort Warren was unable to comply with 
this order immediately, the technical 
training period at Camp Lee was cut in 
half, and even eliminated entirely in the 

TS Dodd, Basic Mil Tng, pp. 21-25. 

,; Frcedman, General Aspects of the Training Pro- 
gram, Ft. Warren, p. 6. 

7K Lt William H. Fickes and Capt K. H. Dodd, 
Basic Technical Training, Camp Lee (Camp Lee 
ASFTChist rpt,July 1943-January 1946), p. 119. 
(Hereafter cited as Fickes and Dodd, Basic Tech Tng, 
Camp Lee.) 




case of men sent directly to units upon fin- 
ishing their basic military training. 

These early problems were pretty well 
resolved by the beginning of 1943. Com- 
petent instructors had been selected and 
trained, technical shops and other training 
facilities had been constructed, and the 
original gap between urgent requirements 
on the battle fronts and production on the 
home front had lessened to the extent that 
sizable quantities of equipment were be- 
ing provided for the training centers. The- 
oretical instruction in the classroom had 
been reduced to a minimum, and each 
man was being given the opportunity to 
learn his job by doing it. For example, ap- 
prentices learned to become mechanics by 
working on modern military trucks, bakers 

baked bread in mobile bakeries, and laun- 
dry operators washed clothes for the camp. 

During the later years of the war the 
technical training program was expanded 
by the addition of such new courses as 
testing of petroleum products, office-ma- 
chine repair, band training, slaughtering 
and the cutting of meats, and preparation 
of dehydrated foods. Moreover, frequent 
adjustments were necessary because of the 
constant improvement of equipment and 
the development of new and better train- 
ing aids. Most of the training films were 
only in the embryonic stage by the end of 
1942, and many other types of training 
aids were still to be developed. 

Generally speaking, all technical train- 
ing at the QMRTC's was divided into two 



categories: motor training and supply 
training. During the emergency period 
and the early months of the war when the 
Corps was responsible for the transporta- 
tion function, motor training represented 
more than half of the Quartermaster 
training load. 79 This situation did not 
change immediately with the transfer of 
motor transport activities to the Ordnance 
Department on 1 August 1942. Facilities 
of that service were not yet adequate for 
training personnel in third and fourth 
echelon maintenance, so the QMRTC's 
were directed to instruct the necessary 
maintenance specialists. This policy con- 
tinued into 1943, though Camp Lee and 
Fort Warren were required to give only 
basic military instruction to the majority 
of Ordnance trainees after December 
1942. 80 Motor training declined sharply at 
the QMRTC's in 1943, as there was no 
longer a demand for the Corps to supply 
motor mechanics except for second eche- 
lon maintenance of its own vehicles. 

Schools for motor training were organ- 
ized into two general groups: motor opera- 
tion or driver training, and motor mainte- 
nance. The latter group offered instruction 
in many different automotive fields to 
train men as apprentice and general me- 
chanics, machinists, welders, blacksmiths, 
engine specialists, electricity and carbure- 
tion specialists, draftsmen, and shop fore- 

Motor training, insofar as organization 
and program of instruction were con- 
cerned, developed a more or less definite 
pattern by 1943. The plan employed at 
Camp Lee in giving instruction to me- 
chanics and apprentices illustrates the 
general procedure followed in training all 
of the various specialists in the motor 
maintenance field. The program was 
based on the theory that trainees learned 

best by doing, and to that end they re- 
ceived most of their training by actually 
meeting diagnosis and maintenance re- 
quirements on vehicles in need of repair. 

The unit shop method was employed, 
with the shops divided into chassis and en- 
gine bays, each equipped with appropri- 
ate tools and equipment. 81 Uniformity of 
instruction in the various shops was as- 
sured through the use of lesson plans for 
instructors and job sheets for students. A 
minimum amount of theoretical instruc- 
tion was supplemented by an extensive 
program of practical conferences and dem- 
onstrations where numerous training aids 
were utilized, including training films, 
film strips, charts, and cutaway models of 
automotive working parts. 

Students were instructed in nomencla- 
ture, mechanical operations, and the use 
of hand tools, and then taught how to re- 
pair and adjust various types of Army ve- 
hicles. In addition, they were instructed in 
methods of recovering disabled vehicles 
under field conditions. They were taught 
first the disassembly and reassembly of 
engine units, together with the hand-tool 
course consisting of soldering, filing, chip- 
ping, drilling, thread cutting, screw ex- 
tracting, and flaring. The vehicle-recovery 
portion of the course consisted of training 
in field rigging and expedients, wreckers 
and wrecker service, and actual recovery 

One feature of this training was the 
"county fair" method of instruction 

59 (1) Freedman, Genera] Aspects of the Training 
Program, Camp Lee, p. 13. (2) Freedman, General 
Aspects of the Training Program, Ft. Warren, p. 17. 

K " (1) Freedman. General Aspects of the Training 
Program, Ft. Warren, p. 17. (2) Freedman, General 
Aspects of the Training Program, Camp Lee, p. 13. 

sl Separate engine and chassis shops were used at 
Fort Warren. See Fickes and Dodd, Basic Tech Tng, 
Camp Lee. p. 42, n. 70. 






whereby small groups of trainees were able 
to witness various demonstrations at the 
same time, rotating until each group had 
witnessed all demonstrations. The final 
stages of training consisted of repairs, re- 
placements, and adjustments to engine 
units with special attention to engine re- 
building, carburetion and ignition, lubri- 
cation, and vehicle inspection. 82 

The production shops, where the sixth 
and seventh weeks of the course were 
spent, provided the trainees with ample 
opportunity for practical application of 
their training in the servicing of the hun- 
dreds of vehicles in use at the Camp Lee 

ENGINES at a Quartermaster motor transport 

QMRTC. Throughout the course the re- 
lationship between the students and in- 
structors was similar to that between ap- 
prentices and foremen. Individual rather 
than group instruction was the rule. 
Students were graded on their aptitude 
and interest displayed in the workshop 
and their general ability to perform the 
tasks covered in the job sheets. 

In the motor operations school, poten- 
tial vehicle operators who passed prelimi- 
nary mental and physical examinations 
were subjected to a psychophysical test. 

8 - Ibid., pp. 41-50, 68. 



This was designed to determine visual 
acuity, steadiness, color perception, range 
of vision, and co-ordination of the trainees, 
and to eliminate those unfit to become 
Army drivers. The drivers' course during 
the first weeks was virtually the same as 
that given apprentice mechanics. The ob- 
jective was to teach the nomenclature and 
functions of units and parts of motor ve- 
hicles as a background for training in ve- 
hicle operation as well as in preventive 
maintenance, including inspections, tight- 
ening, lubrication, and the use of tools and 
equipment furnished with Army vehicles. 
Brief classroom instruction was given in 
such subjects as hand signals, map read- 
ing, forms and records, and lubricants. 
Actual driving instruction was conducted 
on a progressive pattern, beginning with 
elementary training, followed by convoy 
operations, night and blackout driving, 
driving over difficult terrain, motor inspec- 
tions, and decontamination of vehicles, 
and concluding with instruction regarding 
trailer units, loads, and loading. At the 
conclusion of the course trainees were 
given final written and road tests. 83 

An additional week was added to the 
drivers' eight-week course in the summer 
of 1944 in order to train personnel in the 
mechanism, maintenance, and the firing 
of the .50-caliber machine gun from vari- 
ous mounts. Trainees spent the first day 
and a half learning the nomenclature and 
mechanism of the gun and then were as- 
signed to a scaled-down range where they 
practiced firing a compressed-air-operated 
duplicate of the gun at model planes 
towed across a backdrop. The scale was 
such that the leads taken with the training 
gun were the same as would be taken with 
an actual machine gun under normal bat- 
tle conditions. The last half of the week 
was spent at Camp Pendleton, Va., where 

the trainees fired actual machine guns 
mounted on trucks at free balloons, towed 
sleeve-aerial targets, and radio-controlled 
airplane targets along the seacoast. 84 

Supply training covered a wider and 
more diversified field than motor training 
and presented a greater problem in group- 
ing specialists for common courses. The 
groupings made at Camp Lee and Fort 
Warren varied from time to time but, gen- 
erally speaking, plumbers, steamfitters, 
and sheet metal workers were given a 
common course, as were chief clerks, 
typists, clerk-typists, shipping clerks, mes- 
sengers, and first sergeants. Instruction in 
depot supply, commissary operations, pro- 
curement, and warehousing usually was 
combined because depot supply and com- 
missary operations were similar in that 
they dealt with items procured, while 
warehousing was a concomitant of each. 
Salvage, service, and railhead operations 
also provided a common ground for train- 
ing. Similarly, a carpentry course was 
given construction specialists and general 
mechanics as well as carpenters. In each 
instance of combined training an attempt 
was made to accentuate the specialty 
training necessary for the individual. 8 * 

Such groupings usually made it possible 
to consolidate the numerous specialists in 
the supply-training field into fewer than 
twenty technical schools at each of the 
QMRTC's. The most common of these 
were administrative and supply, depot 
supply, bakery, canvas repair, carpentry, 
clothing and textile, cooks' and mess ser- 
geants', electrical, fumigation and bath, 

83 Ibid., pp. 50-57, 62-69. 

84 (1) Ibid., pp. 58-59. (2) MTP 21-3, Sec. VI, 1 
May 44, sub: MTP for Enlisted Pers of the ASF. 

85 Fickes and Dodd, Basic Tech Tng, Camp Lee, 
pp. 79-80. 




INSTRUCTION IN MEAT CUTTING at a Quartermaster school for cooks and mess 

labor, laundry, plumbing, salvage and 
shoe repair schools. 

Each school was normally headed by an 
officer, and his instructional staff usually 
comprised officers, enlisted men, and ci- 
vilians. All of the schools made marked 
progress from meager beginnings, and 
although their subject matter varied 
widely, their instructional procedure fol- 
lowed a general pattern, as illustrated by 
the following brief description of opera- 
tions at a few of the larger ones at Camp 

In the school for cooks and mess ser- 
geants, company messes were utilized as 
training laboratories to give students prac- 
tical experience in Army cooking. It was 
soon discovered that more than five stu- 

dents overcrowded a kitchen. Conse- 
quently, it became necessary at Camp Lee 
to utilize all of the mess kitchens of the 
QMRTC as well as those of other installa- 
tions in the camp, such as the Quarter- 
master School and the hospital. Instruc- 
tion was divided about equally between 
theoretical classroom training and prac- 
tical cooking instruction and experience in 
the kitchen. Advanced students who ex- 
hibited leadership were given instruction 
as mess sergeants, and student officers 
were trained in mess management. 

As the war progressed, more and more 
emphasis was placed upon practical in- 
struction in the field, such as the care and 
operation of the Ml 93 7 gasoline field 
range, field cooking expedients, and cook- 



ing under convoy and bivouac conditions. 
Early in 1942 the school was allocated 
areas at the rifle range, where tents were 
pitched, field ranges were set up, and 
meals were served to troops. Later in the 
year student cooks were assigned to the 
daily motor training convoys and to troops 
ordered to bivouac overnight in areas out- 
side the camp. A pastry class was formed 
in the summer of 1942 to instruct student 
cooks in baking pastry under field as well 
as garrison conditions. In September 1943, 
when troops sent to the A. P. Hill Military 
Reservation were organized into com- 
panies, student cooks were assigned to 
each company and completed their in- 
struction under conditions closely parallel- 
ing those in theaters of operations. 

Special subjects, too, were added to the 

curriculum as the need arose. In January 
1944 a dehydrated food section was cre- 
ated and students were trained to prepare 
complete meals with dehydrated products. 
In February of the same year a butchery 
section was established to train butchers in 
the proper Army method of slaughtering 
animals and cutting meats. The students 
were placed in various meat packing 
plants and slaughter houses in the nearby 
cities of Petersburg and Richmond to gain 
practical experience. 88 

In the depot supply school, originally 
known as the warehousing school, general 
all-round training in Army depot pro- 
cedure was conducted for selected students 
to prepare them for duty as warehouse- 

S6 Ibid., pp. 111-19. 



men and stock record clerks. They were 
given courses in property accounting, sub- 
sistence accounting, storage and issue, 
requisitions, field operations, procurement, 
and map reading. Instruction was pri- 
marily by the lecture and practical exer- 
cise method. At the same time, the students 
were given a working knowledge of Army 
Regulations pertinent to depot functions. 

As in other schools, increasing emphasis 
was placed on practical and field training. 
A dummy boxcar was erected for use at 
the camp in illustrating the proper method 
of loading and unloading various types of 
equipment and supplies. The trainees 
were taken on a tour of the ASF depot and 
the holding and reconsignment point ad- 
jacent to it at Richmond, where a com- 
plete inspection was held, followed by a 
critique. In October 1943 the school was 
commissioned to operate a provisional 
depot for training purposes at the A. P. 
Hill Military Reservation. The trainees 
lived there for two weeks and experienced 
for the first time conditions similar to those 
they would find in a theater of operations. 
During that time they were required to 
move the depot several times to new loca- 
tions, at least twice under blackout condi- 

In December 1943 a field training area 
was established within the limits of Camp 
Lee, where, during the eighth week of 
training, principles taught earlier in such 
subjects as camouflage and concealment, 
traffic control, stacking of supplies in the 
open, and safety precautions were applied 
in preparation for what was to follow at 
the reservation. In February 1944 ar- 
rangements were made to have trainees 
spend a week of their training at the cold- 
storage warehouse at the Richmond Quar- 
termaster Market Center and at the rail- 
head and distributing point of the Third 

Service Command, where students loaded 
and unloaded perishable subsistence, 
shipped refrigerator cars to various ports 
and military installations, and kept the 
necessary records. 

A depot supply training laboratory was 
constructed late in 1944. It contained a 
number of offices designed to represent 
various types of companies, battalions, 
regiments, divisions, stations, and depots. 
Use of this laboratory enabled instructors 
to detect more easily the weaknesses in 
student performance and gave students a 
better understanding of the flow of paper 
through the various channels of supply. 
About the same time the entire field train- 
ing area was established as a camouflage 
school, one of the features of which was a 
camouflage course that students in all of 
the technical schools were required to at- 
tend one day a week. 

During 1945 facilities of the field train- 
ing area were increased greatly, and the 
depot supply training program was made 
more varied and functional. For example, 
the students were taught the correct 
method of preparing motor vehicles for 
rail shipment, and a glider was utilized to 
demonstrate air cargo transport. Under 
the guidance of instructors, the students 
built paulin warehouses and open-storage 
sheds similar to those used in the various 
theaters. Supplies in paulin cases were 
stacked in a manner illustrating proper 
provision for ventilation to prevent dete- 
rioration of supplies in the humid weather 
encountered in Pacific areas. A model 
beachhead was constructed to demon- 
strate supply operations on enemy beaches. 
The students were taught such things as 
how to use rafts to float in supplies, and 
how to construct temporary bridges. Every 
effort was made to acquaint trainees with 
the field expedients and improvisations 



DUMMY BOXCAR used to demonstrate how to load and unload various types of equipment 
and supplies. 

learned from personnel returned from 
overseas supply operations. 87 

In the laundry school, as another illus- 
tration, students were instructed in the op- 
erations of mobile, portable, and perma- 
nent types of Army laundries, as well as 
in the methods of handling all types of 
fabrics, the different water temperatures 
required under varying conditions, and 
other knowledge necessary for the success- 
ful washing of clothes. The course was de- 
signed to produce four different types of 
specialists: skilled laundry foremen, laun- 
dry-machine operators, potential laundry 
mechanics, and firemen. More than half of 
the total training time was spent in giving 
the students actual experience in the oper- 
ation of all types of laundry machines and 
boilers. The remaining portion of the 

period was devoted primarily to classroom 
instruction in such subjects as laundry 
units, marking and receipt of clothing, 
sorting and delivery, types of water, gen- 
erators, boilers, and plumbing. 88 

Progress of students in absorbing tech- 
nical training at the QMRTC's was tested, 
in general, by weekly and spot quizzes in 
the various schools and a final test at the 
end of the technical training period cover- 
ing all significant phases of the require- 
ments for the specialty involved. Originally 
these final tests were largely theoretical, 
for, while emphasis was placed on meet- 

87 (1) Ibid., pp. 95-99. (2) Capt K. H. Dodd, Bask 
Technical Training, Hq ASFTC, Camp Lee, Va., 
July 1 944-September 1945 (Camp Lee hist rpt, Jun 
46), pp. 16-17. 

88 Fickes and Dodd, Basic Tech Tng, pp. 125-27. 



ing certain requirements, no uniform 
yardstick had been established to ascertain 
just when these requirements had been 
met. In some subjects, such as typewriting 
and weapons firing, the progress of stu- 
dents was obvious, but this was not so in 
many other subjects, such as salvage col- 
lection and laundry maintenance. By June 
1944, however, standardized testing pro- 
grams had been adopted for all specialties 
at both the theoretical and performance 
levels, Performance tests varied in dura- 
tion from a two-hour test for a motor 
mechanic and a twelve-hour test for a 
clerk, to a twenty-four-hour test for a 
laborer or labor foreman. Trainees were 
graded as "skilled" or "potential," and 
such grades were submitted to the Classifi- 
cation and Assignment Section to be used 
as a basis for placement in outgoing assign- 

In an analysis of the replacement train- 
ing program as it affected the QMC 
during World War II, the OQMG found 
that the system, for the most part, was 
"well fitted to the needs for training spe- 
cialists" because it permitted "an advan- 
tageous concentration of the best available 
training facilities and teaching personnel," 
and promoted standardization of instruc- 
tion. At the same time, the OQMG 
pointed out that there were some short- 
comings that tended to lower the efficiency 
of QMC opera tions. ^ " , 

One of these was the failure to provide 
sufficient time for the technical training of 
specialists. The OQMG believed that 
eight weeks were entirely inadequate for 
this instruction and that the period should 
be extended to twelve weeks in any future 

Those trainees who complete their tech- 
nical training in an eight week period are 
merely apprentices. Eight weeks is not suffi- 
cient time to train a man technically. The 
best that can be said for such a trainee is that 
he is equipped to enter a unit and be further 
trained until he becomes proficient in his 
new assignment. If trainees had the advan- 
tage of a 12 week training period in their 
particular skill they would be adequately 
trained and well qualified to move into a unit 
and perform the work for which they had 

The regimental form of training organ- 
ization, which was employed by all of the 
replacement training centers throughout 
the greater part of the war, was deemed 
inefficient because it was necessary for the 
regimental headquarters to perform ad- 
ministrative and supply functions that 
could have been handled by the center 
headquarters in one consolidated organ- 
ization. The duplication resulting from this 
system was a waste of manpower. Camp 

head personnel when it abandoned the 
regimental structure in the fall of 1944 and 


Much valuable training time was lost at 
the replacement training centers during 
the war because no solution was found to 
the problem of how to beep the output of 
specialists of the various types in balance 
with requirements for them. The centers 
trained men in accordance with require- 
ment and replacement rate tables, which 
specified the number and types of special- 

*" {)) Ibid., pp. 30-3 I. (2) Rpt, Mi) Trig Div, Tng 
of Repls, Killer's, ant! Cadres, Pi. I. p. 3 1. 

Results of the analysis were embodied in a report 
to the War Department Replacement Board created 
by the General Staff to study all phases of the replace- 
ment problem. Ltr, Col Hastings, Chief ofPers and 
Trig Div, OQMG, to WD Repl Bd, 17 Sep + ?, sub: 
Repl Svstem Study, ^2. 

91 Ibid. 



ists needed per thousand men for each 
arm and service. These rates varied con- 
siderably as the war progressed. In the be- 
ginning they were based on the require- 
ments for specialists for the many types of 
new units of all kinds that were being 
activated, and upon normal attrition, that 
is, losses from such causes as death, trans- 
fers, and discharges. Later on, after mobi- 
lization was completed and casualty data 
became available from the theaters where 
the units had been sent, battle casualties 
plus normal attrition became the basis for 
computing requirements. Thus demands 
for some types of specialists increased while 
others declined. During the first six 
months of 1944, for example, require- 
ments for specialists in such activities as 
depot operations, laundry, and clothing 
and equipage were much greater than 
they had been in the first six months of 
1942, while demands for bakers, cooks, 
clerks, and motor operators declined 
sharply. 92 

Both Camp Lee and Fort Warren con- 
sistently trained too many men in some 
categories and too few in others, with the 
result that many had to be retrained in 
other specialties. Much of this difficulty 
might have been overcome if the reception 
centers had exercised greater care in mak- 
ing their shipments of trainees to replace- 
ment training centers conform more closely 
in numbers and qualifications to the de- 
sired ratios established by the War Depart- 
ment, and if they had been able to retain 
the more valuable types of specialists until 
the QMRTC's had specific requirements 
for them. Because of their limited capac- 
ities, however, the reception centers were 
unable to do this. The rapid expansion of 
the Army and the shortage of housing 
facilities forced them to keep inductees 
flowing to the QMRTC's or directly to 
units regardless of whether their occupa- 

tional specialties conformed to existing 

Division of control over the QMRTC's 
themselves was still another weakness. 
While The Quartermaster General had 
full responsibility for conducting the train- 
ing, commanders of corps areas (later 
service commands) frequently exercised 
administrative control over the QMRTC's. 
The OQMG expressed the conviction at 
the conclusion of the war that the replace- 
ment training centers had functioned 
more efficiently when they were main- 
tained as installations of the individual 
technical services and both administrative 
and training activities were kept entirely 
under their jurisdiction. It was pointed out 
that consolidation of the two functions 
eliminated duplications and thus not only 
relieved a substantial number of personnel 
for other jobs but also simplified and im- 
proved co-ordinating procedures. 

Obviously there were weaknesses, too, 
in the overseas replacement system, for, 
despite the fact that more than 400,000 
Quartermaster enlisted replacements were 
trained in nearly 100 different military 
specialties at Camp Lee and Fort Warren 
during the war, commanders in the var- 
ious overseas theaters reported that they 
experienced considerable difficulty in get- 
ting the types of specialists they needed. 
They complained from time to time that 
the quantities of men they received fell 
short of the numbers requisitioned and 
that many of those they did get were either 
untrained or only partially trained/' 11 

The situation undoubtedly was due to a 
combination of factors. One of the basic 
factors was, of course, that the replace- 

!l4 (1) Fickes and Do dd, Basic Tech Tng, Camp Lee, 
App. E. (2) See above ] Ch. V, pp. 147-48^ 

" ! Address, Col Lloyd R. Wolfe, Dir of Mil Tng 
Div, OQMG, at Conf attended by chief QMs of areas 
of occupation, 17-29 Dec 45. 



merit training centers trained specialists in 
accordance with MOS rate tables supplied 
by the War Department, which never was 
completely successful in gearing the tables 
to actual requirements, particularly be- 
cause the requirements were changing 
almost constantly. As a result, fully trained 
men were not always available for over- 
seas shipments in all of the categories listed 
in the requisitions and others had to be 

The requisition system itself was at least 
partially to blame. In the first place, The 
Quartermaster General was not author- 
ized to communicate directly with theater 
commanders on matters of personnel and 
therefore was unable to follow through on 
requisitions. The names and MOS num- 
bers of the replacements who were to be- 
come available for overseas assignment 
were reported to The Adjutant General by 
the classification and assignment officer of 
the training center about three weeks prior 
to the time they were to complete their 
technical training. The Adjutant General, 
in turn, filled the theater requisitions, after 
they had been approved by the War De- 
partment, from the lists of potential 
graduates and ordered the commanding 
general of the center to ship the men to the 
appropriate personnel replacement depot 
in the zone of interior. There the men from 
the various services were consolidated by 
their MOS numbers and shipped overseas 
to the personnel depot in the theater to 
which they had been assigned. 

It was from these depots that the com- 
manders finally filled their requisitions 
through MOS numbers. It was often three 
to four months from the time the theater 
commanders submitted their requisitions 
before the soldiers arrived in the theaters, 
and a lot of things could happen in the in- 
terim. One of the most common things 

that did happen was that the requisitions 
for Quartermaster replacements were 
filled by men trained by other technical 
services, and vice versa. 94 Another diffi- 
culty was that replacements often grew 
stale as a result of the long time that inter- 
vened between the completion of their 
training in the zone of interior and their 
assignment to duty in a theater. 

Col. Lloyd R. Wolfe, director of the 
OQMG Military Training Division, who 
investigated the situation on a trip to the 
European Theater of Operations, came to 
the conclusion that the failure of theaters 
to receive the type of trained replacements 
they requisitioned was due to one of two 

Either personnel responsible for the prep- 
aration of theater requisitions are not indicat- 
ing thereon the MOS numbers required. . . . 
or the personnel replacement depots . . . 
are filling requisitions without regard to 
MOS numbers. 95 

In effect, an indirect tug-of-war resulted 
between those responsible for the training 
of Quartermaster personnel in the zone of 
interior and overseas Quartermaster offi- 
cers who made requisitions for replace- 
ments. The former, eager to eliminate 
personnel shortcomings in overseas oper- 
ations, were prepared to make appropriate 
adjustments in the training program. At 
the same time, the overseas need for Quar- 
termaster personnel was always so des- 
perate that the theaters were actually pre- 
pared to take partially trained men on the 
theory that they could round out their 
training "on the job." Obviously such a 
situation could never satisfy all parties; it 
could only be resolved by constant experi- 

*' 4 Remarks, Col Hastings and Col Wolfe, OQMG, 
at Conf, 17-29 Dec. 45. 

Address, Col Wolfe, OQMG, at Conf, 17-29 
Dec 45. 


Schools for Officers and 
Enlisted Specialists 

The technical schools operated at the 
Quartermaster replacement training cen- 
ters constituted only one phase of the ex- 
tensive educational system developed by 
the Quartermaster Corps in World War II 
to train the many and varied specialists it 
needed. Numerous other schools and spe- 
cial courses had to be established to train 
new officers and to give advanced instruc- 
tion to enlisted specialists and commis- 
sioned personnel. 

Much of this training was carried on at 
the Quartermaster School, the principal 
permanent educational institution of the 
Corps. It was there that the Quartermaster 
Officer Candidate School was established 
in the summer of 1941 and operated 
throughout the war. In addition, the 
Quartermaster School provided refresher, 
specialist, and advanced Quartermaster 
instruction for many thousands of officers 
and enlisted men. Furthermore, the Corps 
operated special motor transport, sub- 
sistence, and bakers' and cooks' schools, 
and utilized the facilities of many factories, 
commercial trade schools, and civilian col- 
leges and universities that were especially 
equipped to train officers and men for jobs 
requiring highly developed technical or 
administrative skills. 

The supervision of the various schools 
and courses was the responsibility of the 

Military Training Division, OQMG, and 
its predecessors. Insofar as possible, the in- 
struction was given at Army installations. 
In many cases, however, particularly dur- 
ing the early stages of the war, existing 
military facilities were inadequate and it 
became necessary for the division to co- 
ordinate its activities with, and set up 
courses of instruction in, civilian institu- 
tions. In order to accomplish its training 
task, the division not only had to establish 
many elaborate schools, but also had to 
train thousands of instructors and devise 
newer, more efficient instructional meth- 
ods. All of this had to be done in a hurry, 
as large numbers of technicians were 
needed in overseas theaters as well as in 
the zone of interior to handle all phases of 
Quartermaster supply and service. 

The Officer Candidate School 

Courses of instruction at the Quarter- 
master OCS were designed to equip can- 
didates from the enlisted ranks "with the 
basic knowledge needed to begin their 
careers as second lieutenants." 1 Graduates 

1 (1) ASF Manual VI 3. 25 Apr 44. sub: Courses of 
Instruction, p. 46. (2) For a discussion of the problems 
involved in procuring candidates for the Quartermas- 
ter OCS, the growth of the sch ool, and the number 
of graduates, see above. ICh. VlL The Role of the Officer 
Candidate School. 



progressed to higher commissioned grades 
as they acquired additional training else- 
where or experience in the field. The ad- 
vanced training generally was conducted 
at the Quartermaster School or at the 
various depots. 

Enrollment at the OCS was restricted 
originally to warrant officers and enlisted 
men under thirty-seven years of age who 
had been in active service at least six 
months, but early in 1942 the age limit 
was raised to forty-five and the length of 
service required for eligibility was reduced 
to three months. The training covered a 
period of three months until July 1943, 
when the course was lengthened to seven- 
teen weeks. 

As in the case of other Quartermaster 
schools, the instructional program and 
teaching methods changed radically at 
the OCS during the war. The 150 students 
in the first class, which was conducted at 
the Schuylkill Arsenal in Philadelphia in 
the summer of 1941, spent twenty-four 
hours a week for thirteen weeks in the 
classroom attempting to absorb instruction 
in technical fields from lectures. Their 
basic military training consisted of three 
hours of calisthenics each week and four 
hours of drill and inspection on Saturday 
mornings. Members of the faculty and 
staff, largely Reserve officers with limited 
experience, had to devote much of their 
time to preparing instructional material 
because War Department publications 
were inadequate. The only weapons avail- 
able were rifles borrowed from the Uni- 
versity of Pennsylvania ROTC. 2 

With the transfer of the Quartermaster 
School from Philadelphia to Camp Lee, 
Va., the second officer candidate class be- 
gan there in October 1941. It had been 
under way two months when the attack 
upon Pearl Harbor brought the United 

States into the war and forced a vast en- 
largement of the OCS program and facil- 
ities. The October class was approximately 
the same size as the first one, but the third 
class, which began in January 1942, en- 
rolled 500 candidates. Within a few 
months the Quartermaster OCS quota 
had jumped to 1,200 per class, and it be- 
came necessary to establish a branch OCS 
at Fort Francis E. Warren, Wyo., to han- 
dle the overflow from Camp Lee. New 
Quartermaster OCS classes were started 
at the rate of one about every three weeks 
throughout 1942. 

This mass production of new officers 
made it necessary to revise instructional 
methods and to procure many additional 
instructors, a large share of whom were se- 
lected from among the graduates of the 
early OCS classes. Manuals and other 
training publications were hurriedly pre- 
pared, and training aids, such as films, 
miniature models, charts, graphs, and 
dramatizations, began to be developed to 
supplement lectures. Training equipment 
was so scarce throughout the first year of 
the war that instructors frequently had 
only pictures, drawings, or replicas to show 
the candidates in demonstrating the oper- 
ating principles of the weapons and the 
numerous types of machines they would 
use later in the field. It was 1943 before 
equipment was available in sufficient 
quantities so that the candidates could ob- 
serve, and sometimes participate in, the 
actual operation of the machines and ap- 

The course of instruction itself was also 
revised substantially following Pearl Har- 
bor. Actual involvement in the war meant, 
of course, that a large proportion of the 

2 Rpt, Mil Tng Dlv, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. I, 
pp. 3-6. 



new officers would soon be serving in the 
field. Additional basic military and tech- 
nical subjects therefore were introduced, 
and efforts were exerted toward making 
the instruction more realistic. The pro- 
gram throughout the first year of the war, 
however, was based on the general as- 
sumption that the Quartermaster officer 
had to be trained only as a technician. 
Consequently the emphasis was upon 
training in the technical aspects of Quar- 
termaster supply, with virtually no atten- 
tion directed to possible participation in 
combat operations. 

The need for a radical change in the of- 
ficer training program became increas- 
ingly apparent late in 1942 and early in 
1943. Information received from military 
observers in the North African Theater of 
Operations in the winter of 1942-43 re- 
vealed that supply concentrations were 
favorite targets of enemy planes and tanks 
and that there were disastrous results 
when supply lines were not adequately 
protected. This experience changed the 
basic requirements for Quartermaster of- 
ficers since it meant in effect that they 
would have to be trained as combat leaders 
as well as technicians. They would have to 
be physically fit, familiar with tactics, and 
capable of directing Quartermaster troops 
in defending themselves and their equip- 
ment and supplies. 

This new concept resulted in extensive 
revisions in the OCS program, as well as 
in the other courses offered at the Quarter- 
master School which were designed to give 
advanced training to officers. Physical 
conditioning, use of the obstacle course, 
and some weapons training had been in- 
troduced in 1942, but by the spring and 
summer of 1943 a rigorous military train- 
ing program was under way, with special 
emphasis upon tactical field training and 

defense against gas, mechanized, air, and 
paratroop attacks. 3 

Tactical training exercises were given 
during this period in airplane loading, 
blackout driving, car loading, handling 
clothing and. equipage, driving course and 
convoy operations, field bakery, gasoline 
and oil supply, kitchen car, motor march, 
mobile laundry, railhead and truckhead, 
sterilization and bath, and warehouse op- 
erations. Major technical subjects in the 
program included orientation on the prog- 
ress of the war, classification procedure, 
personnel administration, commercial 
transportation, procurement, methods of 
instruction, packaging and loading of sup- 
plies, salvage, field operations, and depot 

By the time this more practical military 
training program had been developed, the 
most urgent requirements for officers were 
finally being met and the size of OCS 
classes began a steady decline that con- 
tinued until near the end of 1943." With 
the pressure eased, the emphasis at the 
OCS shifted from quantity to quality, and 
all officer candidate training in the ASF 
was extended from thirteen to seventeen 
weeks beginning in July 1943. The addi- 
tional four weeks made possible more in- 
tensive field and military training. The 
new course adopted at the Quartermaster 
OCS provided for about eleven weeks of 
military training and maneuvers, though 
academic instruction was conducted con- 
currently with the military training. 

The belief was quite general in the clos- 
ing weeks of 1943 that the Quartermaster 
OCS had virtually accomplished its mis- 
sion and that future operations would be 

3 (1) Ibid., pp. 21-28. (2) OCS Program of Instruc- 
tion, Jun-Jul 43. 

4 See above, Ch. VI, The Role of the Officer Candidate 

MINIATURE MODELS FOR TRAINING. Above, scale models of piers, camouflaged 
warehouses, and a cargo vessel; and below, electrically operated miniature trains. 

MINIATURE MODELS FOR TRAINING. Above, reproductions of railheads for three 
classes of supply; and below, base depot with camouflaged warehouses. 



on a very small scale. For a brief period in 
December of that year no classes were in 
session, and the one class that began that 
month enrolled only 103 candidates. It 
quickly became apparent, however, that 
requirements for commissioned personnel 
in the QMC had been underestimated, for 
almost immediately another serious short- 
age of Quartermaster officers developed 
and it became necessary to increase sharply 
the size of OCS classes. In the first six 
months of 1944 eight new classes were 
started with a combined enrollment of ap- 
proximately 2, 550. 5 

This reversed trend and sudden revival 
in officer candidate training stimulated in- 
terest in the program and resulted in a 
number of changes. One of the most im- 
portant of these was the inauguration of a 
tactical field training program that re- 
quired the candidates to live under field 
conditions for two of the seventeen weeks 
of their training period. During this phase 
they were called upon to solve practical 
problems in technical and basic military 
training and in this and other ways prove 
their ability and leadership. The field 
training was conducted originally at the 
Swift Creek Recreation Area and the Jor- 
dan's Lake Training Area, both in the 
general vicinity of Camp Lee, and later at 
the A. P. Hill Military Reservation. 

Another important change was the ap- 
pointment in January 1944 of a director 
of officer candidate training, who occupied 
a staff position under the assistant com- 
mandant, Quartermaster School Depart- 
ment. One of the first acts of this director 
was to conduct a survey to determine the 
strong and the weak points of the OCS 
program. This proved helpful in correct- 
ing mistakes and in strengthening the pro- 
gram to insure that the new officers ac- 
quired the combination of military and 
technical skills necessitated by the logistics 

of modern global warfare. The survey led 
to a decision to allot more time to such 
subjects as weapons familiarization and 
firing, physical training, inspection and 
maintenance of motor vehicles, command 
of Negro troops, vehicle loading, bivouacs 
in theaters of operations, map exercises, 
stock record accounting, preparation of 
shipping documents, supply procedures for 
units ordered overseas, the command 
voice, troop movements by motor trans- 
port, Quartermaster administration, 
methods of instruction, and classification 
of clothing. 6 

Revisions made in the OCS subject 
matter after the middle of 1944 were of a 
relatively minor nature, but a reorganiza- 
tion of the School Department in October 
of that year brought changes in educa- 
tional methods and procedures that re- 
sulted in a general improvement of the 
program. OCS instructors, who formerly 
had divided their time among various 
kinds of courses at the Quartermaster 
School, were assigned exclusively to the 
newly created Officer Candidate Division 
and so were able to devote their full atten- 
tion to this one type of training. Moreover, 
the director of the officer candidate course 
was also made director of the Officer Can- 
didate Division, and this gave him the 
responsibility for the OCS program as well 
as the immediate supervision over the in- 
structional staff. Thus he was able to 
realign the various fields of subject matter 
in such a way as to eliminate duplications 
and provide a more logical sequence and 
continuity to the training. 7 

Reports from the theaters had indicated 

5 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. II, 
p. 22. 

6 Ibid., Pt. I. pp. 26, 33-34, and App. 21, showing 
program of instruction. 

7 Supplementary Hist Rpt, Mil Tng Div, OQMG, 
for ASF, QMC Officer Candidate School, 30 Jun-31 
Dec 44, pp. 1,4-5, 9-1 1. 



that the most common weakness among 
Quartermaster officers was their lack of 
leadership ability. Emphasis therefore was 
centered upon interpreting all OCS train- 
ing in terms of the leadership duties and 
responsibilities of junior officers with 
troops in the field. All staff-level training 
was eliminated except certain phases con- 
sidered essential as background for later 
advanced instruction. 8 

Educational procedures employed be- 
tween the fall of 1944 and V-J Day were 
characterized by the increased use of ap- 
plicatory exercises, demonstrations, and 
group performances, including such new 
features as dramatic skits to illustrate mili- 
tary leadership, animated cartoons with 
recorded narrative, written "situations" or 
problems requiring individual solutions, 
and forum-type presentations in which 
both faculty members and students parti- 
cipated. A "corner book shelf was pro- 
vided in the classrooms to encourage 
voluntary collateral reading on the tech- 
nical and tactical progress of the war. 

Early in 1945 the portion of the training 
period devoted to field training at the A. P. 
Hill Military Reservation was increased to 
three weeks, in line with the policy of pre- 
senting all types of instruction in practical 
form. Beginning in the spring of that year, 
when the early defeat of Germany had be- 
come a certainty, all map-reading exer- 
cises and training problems in field oper- 
ations and logistical planning were based 
on anticipated activities in the Pacific. 9 

Candidates in the early OCS classes 
were organized into a single training com- 
pany for housekeeping purposes, but later 
on, when their numbers increased, it be- 
came necessary to form them into regi- 
ments. The platoon, nevertheless, was 
always the basic organization for field and 
classroom work. 

Each platoon had its own training offi- 

cer who served as leader and field instruc- 
tor. The platoon leader was the keystone 
of the officer-training system because he 
instructed the men in all military phases of 
Quartermaster operations, and it was 
upon his leadership that much of the suc- 
cess of the program rested. Moreover, he 
had the responsibility for making a careful 
study of each man in his platoon and 
eliminating all who failed to display the 
necessary qualifications. The platoon lead- 
er usually was a recent graduate of the 
OCS who had been chosen for the job be- 
cause he had demonstrated superior abil- 
ity in leadership. 10 

The cadet system followed at the school 
provided a practical test of the candidates' 
ability to command troops. Each man was 
given the opportunity to command troop 
units ranging in size from a squad to a bat- 
talion, and to serve in the capacity of both 
a noncommissioned and a commissioned 
officer. The platoon leader had the respon- 
sibility for assigning cadet officers and 
maintained a roster to make certain that 
cadet duties were evenly distributed 
among the candidates. Each cadet was 
graded on the originality and initiative he 
showed in the performance of his duties 
and responsibilities. 

Another important feature of OCS 
training was the Quartermaster Demon- 
stration Battalion. This battalion, which 
was employed in the technical training 
and field operations of all divisions of the 
Quartermaster School, was authorized in 
April 1942, but it was the fall of the year 
before adequate equipment was available 

8 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. II, 
p. 13. 

9 Ibid., pp. 1-11. 

10 (1) For a detailed discussion of the duties of the 
platoon leader, see Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off 
Candidates, App. 31. (2) Insp Rpt, Maj David D. 
Brobnis and Capt Benton D. Brandon for TQMG, 17 
Feb 44, sub: Q_M OCS. 



to make its work effective. It comprised 
thoroughly trained men and officers and 
its function was to demonstrate the correct 
method of carrying on the various Quar- 
termaster activities and the proper use of 

The officer candidates not only watched 
but participated to some extent in these 
demonstrations. For example, when a field 
bakery unit was being demonstrated, they 
helped to mix the dough, operate the ma- 
chinery, and eat the bread. A similar pro- 
cedure was followed in demonstrations of 
other units. The candidates were encour- 
aged to examine the units, ask questions, 
and discuss the problems connected with 
their use in the theaters. The value of this 
practical training aid was rated so highly 
and the program of demonstrations in- 
creased to such an extent that by the early 
part of 1945 the Demonstration Battalion 
had absorbed the Military Training Divi- 
sion of the Quartermaster School. 1 1 

Special training platoons were estab- 
lished late in 1942 for candidates who 
appeared to possess the necessary qualifi- 
cations but whose records of progress were 
not up to the level of the rest of the class. 
Those whose difficulty was traced to the 
fact that they had lost or had never 
learned the technique of efficient study 
were assigned to the Academic Orienta- 
tion Platoon where efforts were made to 
help them correct their own deficiencies 
through expert guidance and supervision. 
Some of the candidates lacked sufficient 
basic miljtary skills to keep up with the 
class, and these were placed in the Mili- 
tary Development Platoon where they 
were given intensive practice in individual 
and group drilling. A candidate assigned 
to either of these platoons was given two 
weeks to overcome his weakness. If success- 
ful he joined the next OCS class. When 

the student's ability was still in doubt he 
was ordered to appear before the Officer 
Candidate Faculty Board, which ruled 
upon the disposition of all weak students. 12 

Competent instructors were scarce from 
the start, and the shortage became acute 
when the OCS enrollment began to in- 
crease sharply soon after Pearl Harbor. It 
was necessary at first to select outstanding 
students from OCS classes and commis- 
sion them a week or so in advance in order 
that they might be ready to teach in the 
next scheduled class. A systematic pro- 
gram for selecting and training instructors 
was set up early in 1942 with the estab- 
lishment of the Instructor Training and 
Guidance Section under the assistant com- 
mandant of the Quartermaster School. 
OCS classes remained the greatest single 
source of potential instructors. By 1945, 
however, more than 60 percent of the in- 
structors were officers returned from over- 
seas. Because of the constant turnover of 
instructors, the work of the section was 
important throughout the war. 13 

At the beginning of the OCS program, 
each instructor specialized in certain sub- 
jects and taught them both in the OCS 
and in other divisions of the Quartermas- 
ter School. Early in 1942, however, in 
order to put the school on a stricter mili- 
tary basis, members of the faculty as well 
as the OCS candidates were organized 

11 For a more detailed account of the operations of 
the Quartermaster Demonstration Battalion, see: (1) 
Rpt. Mil Tng Div. Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. I, pp. 
18-19, 31: (2) Supplementary Hist Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG. for ASF, n. d., sub: QM Demonstration Bn, 
30Jun-31 Dec. 44, pp. 1-6; and (3) Supplementary 
Hist Rpt, Mil Tng Div, OQMG, for ASF, QM 
Demonstration Bn, 1 Jan-30 Ju n 45, pp. 1-10 and 

'- Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Off Candidates, Pt. I, 
pp. 36-38 and App. 26. 

1 ! Ibid., Pt. II, p. 17. For a detailed discussion of the 
Instructor Training and Guidance Section, see Pt. I, 
pp. 48-52. 



along regimental lines. Instructors taught 
only in the regiment to which they were 
assigned. Because this plan was uneco- 
nomical and inefficient, it was soon aban- 
doned and the faculty was again 
reorganized. This time a department sys- 
tem was devised whereby instructors were 
grouped into departments in accordance 
with the subjects they taught. This ar- 
rangement continued until October 1944 
when, as pointed out earlier, the Officer 
Candidate Division was created in the 
Quartermaster School Department and 
the instructors who were assigned to it de- 
voted their full attention to teaching in the 

The Quartermaster School 

While various temporary schools were 
conducted earlier by the QMC, the Quar- 
termaster School had its beginning as a 
permanent educational institution in Jan- 
uary 1920. At that time the General Ad- 
ministrative School was established at the 
Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot for the 
purpose of training selected enlisted men 
of the Corps in clerical, administrative, 
and executive duties. The original class 
graduated only seventeen men, but the en- 
rollment in subsequent classes grew 
steadily, and in 1921 the school moved to 
larger quarters in the Schuylkill Arsenal 
in Philadelphia. The following year offi- 
cers and warrant officers were enrolled for 
the first time, and extension courses were 
instituted for Reserve and National Guard 
officers. By 1926 the name had been 
changed to the Quartermaster Corps 
School, and finally, in 1936, to the Quar- 
termaster School. 1J 

The mission of the school as well as its 
program of instruction gradually expand- 
ed over the years preceding the outbreak 

of World War II. In 1925 the school was 
removed from the jurisdiction of the Phila- 
delphia Depot and established as an inde- 
pendent institution of the Corps. 15 By 1936 
it had become the function of the school 
not only to train selected officers, warrant 
officers, and enlisted men, but "to stand- 
ardize methods of quartermaster instruc- 
tion" and "to prepare and revise training 
literature and Army extension courses." 18 

During World War II the program of 
the Quartermaster School expanded enor- 
mously. In addition to training officer can- 
didates, the institution conducted numer- 
ous courses of instruction in administrative, 
technical,, and military aspects of Quarter- 
master activities for enlisted men and 
women, Reserve and National Guard 
officers, ROTC students, and commis- 
sioned personnel. The school also had the 
responsibility for preparing and revising 
manuals, handbooks, and similar instruc- 
tional material. Moreover, it was given a 
new function in October 1943, when it was 
called upon to assist to a limited extent in 
the training of Quartermaster units. 17 

When the emergency was declared in 
1939 the activities of the school were still 
comparatively limited in scope. The pro- 
gram of instruction comprised only a two- 
month refresher course for National Guard 
and Reserve officers, which would fit them 
primarily for garrison rather than active 

" (1) Annual Report of The Quartermaster General, 1920 
(Washington, 1920), p. 17. (2) Maj Robert G. Brady, 
"Our General Administrative School." Q_A4R, I 
(March-April 1922), pp. 23-26. (3) AR 350-900, 10 
Dec 26. sub: The QMC School. (4) AR 350-900, 14 
Nov 36, sub: The QM School. 

11 Ltr, TQMG to Col W. S. Wood, 10 Jan 25. sub: 
The QMC School, 321.5 (School, QMC). 

" : AR 350-900, par. 2, 14 Nov 36, sub: The QM 

See belov 

Ch. IX 

ity for Unit Training. 

The Corps' Limited Responsibil- 



field duty, and a nine-month peacetime 
course for enlisted men. 

The program was modified in July 
1940, as a result of the Army augmenta- 
tion, to prepare selected Quartermaster 
Reserve officers and enlisted men of the 
Regular Army for active duty with the 
newly formed Quartermaster units. At 
that time the school inaugurated the Offi- 
cers' Course (Special), a refresher course 
that covered the entire field of Quarter- 
master functions in a general way, and the 
Enlisted Men's Course (Special), which 
was designed to train regimental, bat- 
talion, and company sergeants, first ser- 
geants, company clerks, and rail transpor- 
tation clerks. While facilities at the 
Schuylkill Arsenal had been adequate for 
peacetime instruction, they became quite 
cramped and unsuitable when the pro- 
gram began to expand to meet emergency 
requirements. Quarters were insufficient 
at the installation to accommodate all of 
the students and even meals had to be ob- 
tained outside from civilian sources. More- 
over, most of the instructors were lacking 
in field experience, and equipment was 
inadequate for the new courses. 18 

The steady growth of enrollment in 
these courses and the opening of the large 
ROTC graduate and officer candidate 
classes in the summer of 1941 forced the 
Quartermaster School to seek larger quar- 
ters, where technical field training could 
be given, and it was moved to Camp Lee 
in the fall of that year. Between then and 
the late summer of 1942 four main groups 
of temporary buildings were completed, 
along with extensive outdoor tactical field 
training and technical training demon- 
stration areas. 

Activities of the school expanded sharply 
after Pearl Harbor and by the middle of 
1944 a total of 126 classes had been organ- 

ized in 18 different courses in which more 
than 9,000 commissioned officers received 
advanced training. This was in addition to 
the classes for officer candidates, enlisted 
men, Army nurses, and Wacs. 19 The in- 
crease in the size of the staff, faculty, and 
administrative organization is indicative 
of the growth of the school's program. 
From a peacetime staff of about 20 mem- 
bers in 1940, the operating personnel in- 
creased to nearly 100 in the summer of 
1941, attained a wartime peak of approxi- 
mately 1 ,900 officers, warrant officers, and 
enlisted personnel at the end of 1942, and 
still numbered more than 1,300 on V-J 
Day. 20 • 

A battalion system was adopted at first 
for the administration of the school's en- 
larged training program, but by the spring 
of 1942 a regimental-type organization 
under a commanding officer of troops was 
authorized. Under the system of school 
regiments both the students and the faculty 
were organized along regimental lines. 
The instructors taught only in the regi- 
ments to which they were assigned. They 
also acted as company officers and gave 
instruction in both basic military and tech- 
nical subjects. In August 1 942 all academic 
instructors were withdrawn from the regi- 
ments and placed in the Academic Train- 
ing Division, which was created to provide 
for more specialization in technical sub- 
jects. The regiments retained sole respon- 
sibility for basic military training. 

About a year later, in July 1943, the 
Academic Training Division was renamed 
the School Department, and assumed re- 

18 Rpt ; Mil Tng Div, OQMG, for ASF, Schooling 
of Commissioned Offs, QM School Sec, pp. 1-7. 
la Ibid., p. 1. 

20 E. Ramsey Richardson, History of the Quartermaster 
School (OQMG hist monograph, circa 1946), App. 
I V-B. (Hereafter cited as Richardson, Hist of QM 



sponsibility for all instruction at the 
Quartermaster School, including the 
OCS. The School Department was one of 
five departments into which the school was 
organized during the latter part of the 
war, all of them directly responsible to the 
commandant. The commandant was as- 
sisted by an executive officer who was 
charged with the administration of the 
school and its troops, and an assistant com- 
mandant who was responsible for all in- 

After the transfer of the school to Camp 
Lee the Officers' Course (Special), which 
had been initiated in 1940 as a basic re- 
fresher program for Reserve officers, 
proved too general to meet the needs of 
officers destined for active field service, 
and it was brought to an end in February 
1942. In the meantime, however, the 
school had taken steps to provide a new 
type of officer training wholly different 
from its traditional administrative courses 
for post duty, and in October 1941 had 
inaugurated the Officers' Course (Tactical) 
to give instruction in the tactical operation 
of Quartermaster units in the theaters of 
operations. This course ended in April 
1942 after four classes had been held and 
428 officers had been graduated. 21 

During the hurried expansion that fol- 
lowed the attack upon Pearl Harbor, the 
War Department directed the Quarter- 
master School to initiate a practical four- 
week refresher course early in 1942 to 
train Quartermaster officers for duty with 
divisions then being activated. Later in the 
year the title was changed from Officers' 
Course (Refresher) to Officers' Basic Sup- 
ply Course. Moreover, the emphasis was 
placed upon training Quartermaster offi- 
cers in all arms instead of merely for 
infantry divisions, and the course was 
extended to six weeks. 

Beginning in October 1942 the school 
offered a course in Quartermaster oper- 
ations to small quotas of the newly formed 
Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (subse- 
quently renamed Women's Army Corps). 
Late in 1943 the WAC Officers' Course 
was merged with the Officers' Basic Sup- 
ply Course and the women studied the 
same subjects as the men but were ex- 
empted from certain basic military train- 
ing activities. 

Before the establishment of the ASF 
Depot Course, two special depot training 
courses were offered temporarily at the 
Quartermaster School during the latter 
half of 1942 in order to produce officers 
capable of staffing the new Army depots 
then being established at a rapid pace. 
The first of these was the four-week Depot 
Administration Course, which was con- 
ducted late in the summer and was de- 
signed to indoctrinate officers in depot 
theory and practice so that they could go 
back to their depots and train other offi- 
cers and enlisted men for duty in overseas 
installations. It was followed in the fall by 
the Army Specialist Corps Depot Oper- 
ation Course. The purpose of this course 
was to offer classes to selected civilians 
with commercial and industrial warehous- 
ing experience in order to procure 
sufficient officer personnel to staff the new 
installations. The course consisted of four 
ten-day classes that emphasized conserva- 
tion of space and manpower and the effi- 
cient handling of supplies. With the 
abolition of the Army Specialist Corps the 

21 (1) For a detailed description of all courses con- 
ducted at the Quartermaster School and the number 
graduated from each, see Richardson, Hist of QM 
School. (2) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commis- 
sioned Offs, Pt. I, QM School Sec. (3) Rpt, Mil Tng 
Div for TQ_MG, 1 1 Sep 45, sub: Outstanding Accom- 
plishments in World War II. (Hereafter cited as Rpt, 
Mil Tng Div. Accomplishments in WW II.) 



title of the course was changed to the 
Civilian SOS Depot Selection Course, and 
the 315 graduates were commissioned in 
the supply services instead of in the ASC 
as originally intended. 

The ASF Depot Course, which provided 
technical instruction in all operational 
phases of Army warehousing to officers of 
all the technical services, was inaugurated 
in March 1943 and classes were in session 
almost constantly throughout the remain- 
der of the war. The course was divided 
into three periods. The first four-week 
period was conducted at the Quartermas- 
ter School and the instruction was of a 
general nature, including such subjects as 
the organization of the Army for supply, 
the physical handling and transporting of 
supplies, modern warehousing methods, 
materials handling, property accounting, 
packaging and crating, open storage, and 
protection against enemy action. The sec- 
ond period covered the special phases pe- 
culiar to a particular service, while the 
third consisted of practical work in a joint- 
ly operated depot. The second and third 
phases were conducted concurrently, first 
at the Columbus ASF Depot and later at 
the Utah ASF Depot. 22 The classes at the 
Quartermaster School included some mili- 
tary instruction, but the emphasis was 
upon technical instruction and practical 
demonstration of depot practices and 

Constant efforts were made to increase 
the effectiveness of the ASF Depot Course, 
to use faculty members with actual experi- 
ence in overseas depot operations, and to 
give practical and up-to-date instruction 
concerning the problems of supply in over- 
seas theaters. Field trips to depot installa- 
tions were an important part of the 
program. After the spring of 1944 WAC 
officers were regularly enrolled in this 

course, although the total number was 
comparatively small. The course was one 
of the most important conducted at the 
school and nearly 3,500 officers from vari- 
ous technical services were graduated. 23 
Between July 1943 and June 1944 the 
Quartermaster School also offered three 
twenty-day Special Depot Courses. Two of 
these were to acquaint Navy officers with 
Army warehousing methods and proce- 
dures. The third was for Quartermaster 
officers and was similar to the ASF Depot 
Course with the exception that field trips 
were omitted. 

Another outstanding program con- 
ducted at the school was the Advanced 
Supply Officers' Course, which was estab- 
lished in January 1943. It was designed to 
train field-grade and potential field-grade 
officers for field duty as division quarter- 
masters, corps quartermasters, task force 
quartermasters, or staging area quarter- 
masters, and as other staff assistants. Early 
in the course advanced tactical military 
subjects and exercises were introduced, 
and actual field training in relation to the 
operation of Quartermaster units was in- 
stituted at the A. R Hill Military Reserva- 
tion. Primary emphasis, however, was 
upon advanced technical supply problems, 
which were attacked from a staff rather 
than an operating angle. Classes in this 
course were in session ten weeks and more 
than 2,000 officers were given the train- 
ing- 24 

Two special unit-training courses for 
officers, each of four weeks' duration, were 
conducted at the school between April 
1943 and February 1944. The first was 

22 See below. 
Rpt, Mil ; 

Offi cer Training at Depots. 
rig Div, Schooling ot Com mis 


Offs, Pt. I, Addenda, ASF Depot Course Sec, p. 18. 

24 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Accomplishments in WW II, 
p. 7A. 



known as the Officers' Course (Special), 
and seven classes were conducted during 
the period from April to November 1943 
for Quartermaster officers who had been 
selected for assignment to particular units 
soon to be activated. This course was 
divided into three phases. Phase one was 
designed to train officers in basic Quarter- 
master services in theaters of operations; 
phase two included unit operation and 
command training; and phase three was 
devoted to specialization in a particular 
unit. The student officers were required to 
solve practical problems that might arise 
upon their assignment to newly activated 
units. A somewhat similar unit-training 
program, known as Officers' Unit Train- 
ing Course B, was conducted from Novem- 
ber 1943 to February 1944 for pool officers 
awaiting overseas assignment. The pro- 
gram was made realistic by organizing 
provisional battalions in which the student 
officers performed duties in company-type 
units. The faculty acted as battalion head- 
quarters, and the students, acting as com- 
pany officers, had the opportunity to learn 
how battalions were administered in rela- 
tion to subordinate companies. 

In an effort to meet emergency demands 
for critically needed Quartermaster officer 
and enlisted specialists between 1943 and 
V-E Day, the Quartermaster School pre- 
sented three other specialized courses. The 
Graves Registration Course was estab- 
lished in response to requests from theater 
commanders late in 1942 for officers capa- 
ble of handling casualties then occurring 
in combat zones, and three two-week 
classes for officers were conducted during 
the first half of 1943. The course stressed 
practical field work and improvisation in 
graves registration operations. The Ad- 
vanced Baking Course for officers and en- 
listed men was established in July 1943 to 

supplant the training formerly given 
Quartermaster personnel by the American 
Institute of Baking. This course dealt with 
all phases of Army baking and was de- 
signed to produce key personnel for post 
and field bakeries. The Military Fuel and 
Lubricants Course was developed in 
March 1945 when it became apparent 
that continued demands for qualified 
commissioned personnel in that field 
would create a critical shortage of officers 
trained in fuel and lubricants operations. 
The program was established in two 
phases in conjunction with the Navy. The 
first phase was a two-week academic 
course at the Quartermaster School, while 
the second was a three-week applicatory 
training course at the Naval Operations 
Training School at Bayonne, N. J. 

Two courses designed to prepare Quar- 
termaster officers for the unusual supply 
and unit activities in the Pacific area were 
instituted at the Quartermaster School 
during the closing months of the war. The 
Quartermaster Technical Operations 
Course was conducted during April and 
May 1945. Techniques developed in sup- 
ply operations in Europe were presented 
in this course, which stressed the operation 
and maintenance of Quartermaster non- 
divisional units, with special attention to 
the peculiar supply conditions that the 
officers might expect to encounter in the 
Pacific. Between July and September 1945 
a series of four- week classes in the Special 
Clothing and Equipment Course was pre- 
sented to officers and enlisted men repre- 
senting the ASF, the AGF, the AAF, and 
the Canadian Army. This instruction per- 
tained to the use and conservation of Army 
clothing and equipment designed for em- 
ployment in wet-cold climates, such as 
that of the Japanese home islands. The 
course was divided into two parts. The first 



two-week period was conducted at Fort 
Devens, Mass., where the students became 
acquainted with the principles of clima- 
tology and their relationship to Army 
clothing and equipment and studied the 
new items of Quartermaster wet -cold 
clothing and equipment. The second two- 
week period was offered at the Quarter- 
master School, where intensive training 
was given the students in lesson planning, 
public speaking, the use of climatic maps, 
the proper use of clothing, techniques of 
teaching, fitting of wet-cold items, 
psychology of combat, and conservation of 
clothing and equipment. 

Beginning in the spring of 1945 the 
Quartermaster School also operated a 
four-week Nurses' Basic Military Training 
Course for the Third Service Command. 
The purpose was to orient newly commis- 
sioned nurses and instruct them in the 
principles and methods of medical field 
service and Army nursing before they were 
assigned to duty. Ten classes w r ere held be- 
fore V-J Day and more than twelve hun- 
dred nurses were given their basic military 
training at the school. 25 

Two principal courses for enlisted per- 
sonnel, both men and women, were offered 
at the Quartermaster School during the 
war period to prepare them for highly 
skilled positions as noncommissioned offi- 
cers in Quartermaster organizations and 
installations throughout the world. The 
Enlisted Men's Course (Special), which 
had been established in 1940 as a two- 
month course designed to develop Quar- 
termaster sergeants and clerks, was 
reopened in the fall of 1941 after a tem- 
porary suspension in the summer of that 
year. Plans were made at that time to 
lengthen the course and broaden its scope 
but they were never carried out and the 
course ended in February 1942 primarily 

because the school was largely occupied 
with the training of officer candidates. Be- 
fore the end of 1942 the progress of the war 
had created demands for more and better- 
qualified noncommissioned officers than 
could be supplied from the graduates of 
the courses in the QMRTC's. Conse- 
quently a twelve-week advanced course in 
administration and supply for enlisted 
men was inaugurated at the school in 
December of that year. 

This new program was known at first as 
the Enlisted Specialist Course. It was de- 
signed to train enlisted men in administra- 
tion and supply for grades up to technical 
sergeant. Although originally designated 
as basic in character, the program of in- 
struction was so complete that in April 
1943 it was redesignated the Quartermas- 
ter Noncommissioned Officers' Adminis- 
tration and Supply Course (Advanced). 2fi 
1 Instruction was soon concentrated upon 
the training of general clerks, administra- 
tive noncommissioned officers, first ser- 
geants, and supply noncommissioned offi- 
cers. Other specialties were added as 
demands arose, but the main purpose was 
to equip noncommissioned officers to fill 
any positions in their units rather than to 
train them as specialists. 

Beginning in 1943, in keeping with the 
general trend in the Quartermaster 
School, increased emphasis on military 
training was given in this course to prepare 
Quartermaster noncommissioned officers 
for landing operations under fire and for 
the protection of their supply lines and in- 
stallations under combat conditions, and 

* r ' Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Pt. II, Nurses' Basic Mil Tng School Sec, p. 9. 

For a more detailed discussion of all courses for 
Quartermaster enlisted men see Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
OQMG, for ASF, Schooling of Enlisted Pers. 




to qualify them both technically and tac- 
tically for their Quartermaster duties. In 
the spring of that year the course, which 
originally had been restricted to quotas 
from the QMRTC's at Camp Lee and 
Fort Warren, was opened to men from the 
AGF, the AAF, and the nine service 

At that time, too, an inquiry from Fort 
Warren focused attention on the question 
of whether Negro enlisted men could be 
enrolled in the course. The question was 
not settled immediately, but beginning in 
March 1944 Negro students were admit- 
ted. Eventually, quotas were allotted to 

ASFTC's as well as to service commands 
and the arms and services. 

During the spring of 1944 the course 
was adapted to the needs of enlisted WAC 
personnel and was renamed the Quarter- 
master Noncommissioned Officers' and 
WAC Administration and Supply Course 
(Advanced). The course was revised once 
more in the spring of 1945, this time to 
meet the needs of personnel to be rede- 
ployed to the Pacific after the defeat of 
Germany. The new course became effec- 
tive in June 1945 and was renamed the 
Advanced Administration and Supply 
Course (Enlisted). It was an eight-week 



program designed to train warehouse fore- 
men, administrative noncommissioned 
officers, commissary stewards, subsistence 
noncommissioned officers, and Quarter- 
master supply technicians. By V-J Day ap- 
proximately 7,000 enlisted personnel had 
completed the various courses of this ad- 
ministrative program at the Quartermas- 
ter School. 27 

Reserve Officers' Training Corps 

The emergency Quartermaster Reserve 
Officers' Training Corps program was in- 
augurated in mid-June 1941 with the es- 
tablishment of a unit at the Harvard 
Graduate School of Business Administra- 
tion. This was the only Quartermaster 
ROTC unit organized before Pearl Har- 
bor and the only one conducted at a grad- 
uate school. During the first eight months 
of 1942, however, additional Quartermas- 
ter ROTC units were opened at eight 
other colleges and universities. 28 

Students enrolled in the Quartermaster 
ROTC at any of the schools were required 
during their junior and senior years to car- 
ry military and technical Quartermaster 
subjects in addition to the usual academic 
course. The instruction at Harvard was, 
of course, somewhat more advanced in 
nature than that given in the undergrad- 
uate institutions. In all cases, however, 
graduates of Quartermaster ROTC units 
were required to complete an additional 
three months of intensive basic military, 
technical, and tactical instruction at the 
Quartermaster School before they were 
awarded their commissions as second 
lieutenants in the QMC. 

The first -year advanced Quartermaster 
ROTC course included such typical sub- 
jects as organization of the Army and the 
QMC, administration and functions of the 

Corps, Quartermaster company adminis- 
tration, fiscal procedures, procurement 
procedures, property accounting, military 
leadership, storage and issue of supplies, 
defense against chemical warfare, and sal- 
vage operations. Subjects given during the 
second-year advanced program included 
commercial transportation, subsistence, 
military leadership, military history and 
policy, military law, training manage- 
ment, field operations, and principles of 
warfare. In addition, the students were re- 
quired to undergo a practical outdoor pro- 
gram of rigorous physical conditioning, 
military drill, and other basic military 
subjects. 29 Each ROTC unit was organ- 
ized into a battalion or regiment, accord- 
ing to the number of students participat- 
ing, and instructions in the field and 
classroom were carried out on that basis. 

This figure is given as an approximation. Sources 
differ as to the exact total. See Richardson, Hist oj'QM 
Schoot, App. IV-D, p. 4. Compare Rpt, Mil Tng Div, 
Accomplishments in WW II, p. 8. 

28 The schools where Quartermaster ROTC units 
were located, the dates of establishment, and the 
number of students graduated from each are shown 
in the following table: 






Harvard University . . 

Texas A. and M. College . _ 

Michigan State College. __ . 

IS Jun 41 
11 Feb 42 
11 Feb 42 
24 Feb 42 
2 Mar 42 
6 Jun 42 
6 Jun 42 
26 Jun 42 
22 Aug 42 


University of Washington 

Cornell University 

University of Indiana 

University of Michigan. _ 

Stanford University ... . . 

The number that graduated was small compared 
to the enrollment because many were called to active 
duty before graduation. (1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of 
Off Candidates, Pt. I, pp. 22-23. (2) For additional 
discussi on of the Quartermaster ROTC, see above, 
ICh. Vll Procurement Problems in the Emergency Period. 

Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Pt. I, App. I, ROTC Sec. 



The operation of all ROTC units was 
suspended for the duration of the war fol- 
lowing the establishment of the Army Spe- 
cialized Training Program in December 
1942. Early in 1943 The Adjutant General 
ordered the Quartermaster ROTC stu- 
dents absorbed into the current Officer 
Candidate School quotas of the Quarter- 
master School, and thereafter they were 
trained there. 30 

Motor Transport Schools 

Before the transfer of the motor trans- 
port function to the Ordnance Depart- 
ment in August 1942, one of the most 
formidable tasks confronting The Quarter- 
master General was that of providing ade- 
quately trained personnel to operate and 
maintain the countless thousands of new 
automotive vehicles being produced for 
the Army. A shortage of trained automo- 
tive mechanics and maintenance men had 
developed in the Army even before the 
emergency period began in 1939. This 
shortage grew when the military organ- 
ization started to expand in 1940 and 
became acute immediately following Pearl 
Harbor. Moreover, a heavy demand was 
created for qualified motor officers and for 
enlisted specialists in such fields as engine 
rebuilding, welding, sheetmetal repair, 
and carburetion and ignition mechanics. 

The technical training provided at the 
Quartermaster School and at the 
QMRTC's was insufficient to meet these 
specialized demands. Consequently, basic 
and advanced courses for both officers and 
enlisted men were established at special 
motor schools. The largest of these institu- 
tions was the Quartermaster Motor Trans- 
port School, a special service school at the 
Holabird Quartermaster Depot near 

At the beginning of the emergency this 
school was offering one-month refresher 
courses to Reserve and National Guard 
officers to fit them for duty with Quarter- 
master motor transport units, and giving 
three-month courses in automotive spe- 
cialist mechanics to enlisted personnel. 
Because of the urgent need for automotive 
officers and enlisted men, the refresher 
course for officers was broadened in scope 
and lengthened to two months, and a basic 
two-month course and an advanced three- 
month course in automotive mechanics 
were inaugurated for enlisted men. 31 

Three other regional motor transport 
schools were established during the fiscal 
years 1941 and 1942. The first of these was 
the Normoyle Motor Transport School at 
San Antonio, Tex., which had operated 
during the fiscal year 1941 under the full 
control of the Eighth Corps Area and con- 
ducted two-month courses in basic, or first 
and second echelon, motor mechanics for 
enlisted personnel. At the beginning of the 
fiscal year 1942 the instructional control 
over this school was shifted to The Quar- 
termaster General and the program was 
broadened to include a three-month course 
for enlisted men in specialist, or third and 
fourth echelon, automotive mechanics. 
The Atlanta regional motor transport 
school was founded at Fort McPherson, 
Ga. , in July 1941 for the purpose of train- 
ing enlisted personnel in specialist me- 
chanics. In February 1942 the school was 
moved to the nearby Atlanta Quartermas- 
ter Motor Base. The third regional motor 
transport school opened at the Stockton 
Quartermaster Motor Base, Stockton, 

:t " (1) See above. Ch. VI, Procurement Problems in the 
Emergency Period. (2) Rpt, Mil Tug Div, Trig of Off 
Candidates, Pt. I. p. 22. 

151 Ltr, Gen Munnikhuysen, OQMG, to TAG, 30 
Oci 40, sub: Courses of Instruction at the QM MT 
School and Ind, TAG to TQ.MG, 7 Nov 40, 352.01. 




Calif., in December 1941. The Quarter- 
master General had both administrative 
and instructional control over this school 
and conducted courses for officers and en- 
listed men in specialist as well as basic 
automotive mechanics. 32 

Upon the recommendation of The 
Quartermaster General, the General Staff 
in January 1942 redesignated these 
regional motor transport schools as Quar- 
termaster special service schools and 
placed the Normoyle and Atlanta schools 
under The Quartermaster General's com- 
plete administrative and instructional 
supervision in conformance with his con- 
trol over the Holabird and Stockton 
schools. This enabled him to establish a 
standardized and co-ordinated program of 
automotive instruction before the motor 

transport schools were transferred to the 
Chief of Ordnance about six months later. 
The principal courses in the program in- 
cluded a two-month operations and main- 
tenance course for officers, a three-month 
general automotive mechanics course for 
enlisted men, and an advanced course for 
enlisted men. These courses included 
classes of varying length for the different 
types of automotive specialists. 33 

(1) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Enlisted Pers, 
Pt. I, MT Schools Sec, pp. 1-3. (2) Young, Inspection 
of Military Training, pp. 13-15. 

1:1 (1) Ltr, TAG to CGs, Fourth, Eighth, and Ninth 
CAs, 23 Jan 42, sub: Redesignation of QM MT 
Schools. (2) Ltr, Col James H.Johnson to TQMG, 10 
Dec 41, sub: Rpt of Committee on Preparation of Tng 
Directives, Courses and Programs for MT Schools and 
RTCs, with Incls. See Incl 3, sub: Master Schedule 
for MT Schools. (3) Memo, TQMG for ACofS G-3, 
18 Nov 41, sub: QM MT Schools. 



In the meantime, as a stopgap measure 
beginning in March 1941 and continuing 
for about eight months, The Quartermas- 
ter General operated a special training 
program for officers in motor vehicle 
maintenance through the Fort Wayne 
Quartermaster Supply Depot, Detroit, in 
which a series of four-week courses was 
conducted in conjunction with the plants 
of certain automotive manufacturers. Of- 
ficers who were enrolled became familiar, 
by means of lectures and inspection trips, 
with the vehicles produced at these plants 
and learned the basic principles of main- 
tenance. 34 

The Quartermaster General gained 
complete control over another type of 
motor transport school before the transfer 
of the program to the Ordnance Depart- 
ment. In the spring of 1942, four corps 
area motor transport schools that had been 
conducting basic and advanced automo- 
tive mechanics courses for enlisted person- 
nel during the fiscal years 1941 and 1942 
were finally placed under his administra- 
tive as well as instructional supervision. 
These schools were located at Fort Devens, 
Mass.; Miller Field, Staten Island, N. Y.; 
Fort Sheridan, 111.; and Fort Crook, Nebr. 
This transfer of control was a further step 
toward the standardization and correla- 
tion of the motor transport training pro- 
gram. 3r> 

Civilian Trade and Factory Schools 

Even though many new technical 
schools and courses were added, military 
facilities alone were inadequate during the 
early stages of the war for training all of 
the trade and mechanical specialists 
needed by the rapidly expanding Army. It 
was necessary for the QMC, as well as the 
other arms and services, to use the existing 
facilities of many civilian trade and factory 

schools. The Corps utilized approximately 
a score of such schools, which trained more 
than 10,000 officers and enlisted men for 
highly specialized Quartermaster posi- 
tions. 39 

By the end of the fiscal year 1942, seven 
civilian trade schools had been placed 
under contract by the QMC and were 
being operated under the administrative 
and instructional control of The Quarter- 
master General. Six of these, in various 
sections of the country, were presenting 
eight-week to twelve-week courses for en- 
listed men in general automotive mechan- 
ics. The six schools were transferred 
eventually to the Ordnance Department." 
The seventh trade school, the American 
Institute of Baking in Chicago, was en- 
gaged in teaching advanced post and field 
baking to officers and enlisted men. This 
contract remained in effect until the mid- 
dle of 1943. 

Two additional civilian trade schools 
were placed under contract in the fiscal 
year 1943, and they continued to train 
Quartermaster enlisted men until early 
1944. One of these was the Mid- West 
Motive Trades Institute, Danville, 111., 
which conducted a twelve-week course in 

:H (1) The plants were those of the Ford Motor Co., 
Chrysler Motor Corp., and the Truck and Chevrolet 
Divisions of General Motors Corp. (2) Rpt, Mil Tng 
Div, Tng of Commissioned Offs, Pt. I, MT Schools 
Sec, p. 2. 

33 (1) Ltr, Hq SOS to TQMG, 15 Mar 42, sub: 
Transfer of CA MT Schools. (2) Memo, TQMG for 
Dir of Tng Div, SOS, 30 Mar 42, same sub. 

:;B Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Accomplishments in WW II, 
p. 12. 

iT (1) These six schools were: the David Ranken, 
Jr., School of Mechanical Trades, St. Louis; Hampton 
Institute, Hampton, Va.; Mid- West Motive Trades 
Institute, Bloomington, 111.; Mechanical Industries 
Technical Institute, Memphis; National Schools, Los 
Angeles; and Nashville Auto Diesel College (renamed 
Automotive College of Nashville), Nashville. Hamp- 
ton Institute was used to give advanced technical 
training to Negro enlisted men. (2) Young, Inspection 
of Military Training, pp. 19-23, 50-53. 



laundry mechanics. The other was the 
Commercial Trades Institute, Blooming- 
ton, 111., which presented a twelve-week 
course in refrigeration mechanics. 

The majority of the factory schools were 
operated by commercial automobile, tire, 
and motorcycle manufacturers who as- 
sisted the Army in meeting its greatly ex- 
panded requirements for enlisted motor 
specialists during the 1941 and 1942 fiscal 
years by offering tuition-free courses at 
their plants in various types of automotive 
mechanics. The wide experience they had 
gained in training their own factory repre- 
sentatives made it comparatively easy for 
the manufacturers to adapt their programs 
to training Army specialists. Seven of these 
factory -sponsored schools were under the 
administrative control of The Quarter- 
master General, and they offered three- 
week to eight-week courses in tire main- 
tenance, tire recapping and retreading, 
battery repair, motorcycle and ignition 
mechanics, and diesel engine mechanics. 38 
Four of these schools were transferred later 
to the Ordnance Department and the 
others had completed their programs be- 
fore the end of the fiscal year 1942. 39 

Facilities of five other schools were uti- 
lized by the Corps during 1943 and 1944 
for the emergency training of several types 
of urgently needed officer and enlisted 
mechanical specialists. These schools con- 
ducted courses ranging in length from 
one to six weeks in repair and rebuilding 
of shoe-stitching machinery, business- 
machine operation, the manufacture and 
repair of metal petroleum containers, and 
dry-cleaning operations. 40 

Schools in Civilian Educational 

Emergency requirements for certain 
types of highly developed technical or ad- 

ministrative skills, which military schools 
were unprepared to teach, made it neces- 
sary for The Quartermaster General to 
utilize the facilities of several universities. 
Courses at these schools were modified to 
meet the special needs of the Army, and 
expert civilian instructors did the teaching. 

The first of these specialist programs 
was a course in the latest methods of ware- 
housing and handling of Quartermaster 
supplies, which was conducted for a six- 
week period between November 1941 and 
February 1942 by faculty members of the 
University of Pennsylvania at the Phila- 
delphia Quartermaster Depot for a rela- 
tively small group of officers. It was also 
the first depot training program for Quar- 
termaster officers during the emergency 
period. One half of each day was devoted 
to academic work and the other half to 
acquiring practical experience within the 
industrial plants and warehouses through- 
out the Philadelphia area. 

In April 1943 a three-month course in 
supply operations was established at the 
Harvard School of Business Administra- 
tion to provide advanced technical train- 
ing for the many additional officers needed 
to meet the rapidly expanding supply de- 

These schools were sponsored by the Firestone 
Tire and Rubber Co., Akron; Goodyear Tire and 
Rubber Co., Akron: Indian Motorcycle Co., Spring- 
field, Mass.; Ilarlcy-Davidson Motor Co., Milwaukee; 
Electric Auto-Lite Co., Toledo; Winton Engine Plant, 
General Motors Corp., Cleveland; and National Sup- 
ply Co., Philadelphia. 

(1) The schools turned over to the Ordnance De- 
partment were the Firestone, Goodyear, Harley- 
Davidson, and Indian Companies. (2) For more de- 
tailed accounts of factory-sponsored schools see Rpt, 
Mil Trig Div. Schooling of Enlisted Pcrs, MT Schools 
Sec, pp. 7-19, and Young, Inspection of Military Train- 
ing, pp. 23-26, 53-54. 

■"' The sponsors of these schools were the Landis 
Machine Co., St. Louis, Mo.: International Business 
Machine Corp., Endicott, N. Y. ; Federal Machine 
and Welder Co., Warren, Ohio; Petroleum Iron 
Works, Sharon, Pa.; and Green Dry Cleaning Co., 
Fort Bragg, N, C. 



mands of the Army. The course was 
designed to prepare selected Quartermas- 
ter and other ASF officers for higher 
echelons of Army supply work by ac- 
quainting them with the terminology, 
fundamental problems, and point of view 
of businessmen and industrial organiza- 
tions with whom the Army had to deal in 
obtaining supplies and equipment; to give 
them an opportunity to study industrial 
methods adaptable to supply operation; 
and to enlarge the administrative capac- 
ities of the officers so that they might be 
more effective in handling Army supply 
problems. 41 Nearly 400 officers had been 
given this training when the course was 
discontinued in October 1943. 42 

The urgent need for technically quali- 
fied personnel to test and analyze petro- 
leum products acquired by the Army from 
foreign sources led to the establishment of 
the last of these specialized Quartermaster 
training programs in September 1943. At 
that time The Quartermaster General and 
the Eighth Service Command established 
a course at the University of Tulsa, Tulsa, 
Okla., to train officers and enlisted men as 
petroleum laboratory technicians and pe- 
troleum test-engine operators for service in 
Quartermaster petroleum products lab- 
oratories in overseas areas. The training 
began as a four-week course, which was 
lengthened to six weeks in the spring of 
1944. By the fall of that year the require- 
ments for these technicians had been ful- 
filled, and the classes were discontinued 
after a total of 67 officers and 260 enlisted 
men had been given the training. 43 

Schools for Bakers and Cooks 

The facilities for training mess personnel 
that existed at the beginning of the emer- 
gency were entirely inadequate to meet 
the requirements of the rapidly expanding 

Army. They consisted of nine bakers' and 
cooks' schools, one in each corps area, 
which were offering four-month courses 
for selected enlisted men of the Regular 
Army in the theory and practice of cook- 
ing, baking, mess management, and the 
elements of nutrition. 

In order to provide intensive training 
over a shorter period of time, the courses 
were reduced from four to two months 
early in the summer of 1940, but the nine 
schools were still unable to produce a suffi- 
cient number of graduates to fill the in- 
creasing demands for cooks, bakers, and 
mess sergeants. Consequently in the fall of 
that year, the corps areas were authorized 
to expand facilities by establishing sub- 
schools to operate directly under the 
supervision of the nine parent bakers' and 
cooks' schools. At the peak of the program 
in the summer of 1943 there were ninety- 
five of these subschools in operation, and 
during that one year alone nearly 12,000 
officers and more than 46,000 enlisted men 
were trained under the program. 44 All of 
these schools were under the technical and 
instructional supervision of The Quarter- 
master General, while the administrative 
control was the responsibility of the corps 
area in which they were located, except for 
certain designated subschools that were 
placed under the administrative supervi- 
sion of their post commanders. 

With the number of subschools steadily 

41 Incl, Ltr, Dean Donald K. David, Harvard Uni- 
versity Graduate School of Business Adm, to Gen Cor- 
bin, Actg TQMG. 4 Feb 43, sub: Advanced Tech 
Tng Course for Army Sup OAs. 

4 - Rpt, Mil Tng Div. sub: Accomplishments in 
WW II, p. 1 1A. 

4:1 (1) Ibid., p. 1 1. (2) More detailed accounts of 
Quartermaster training in civilian educational insti- 
tutions can be found in Young, Inspection of Military 
Training, pp. 129-32, and Rpt, Mil Tng Div, School- 
ing of Commissioned OfTs, Pt. I, Harvard School of 
Business Administration and University of Tulsa Sees. 

44 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, sub: Accomplishments in WW 
II. p. 10. 




increasing, The Quartermaster General in 
the summer of 1941 issued a general train- 
ing directive designed to make standard- 
ized adjustments in the program in order 
to meet efficiently and expeditiously the 
sharply rising requirements for officer and 
enlisted mess personnel. This new program 
provided two courses for officers. The first 
was the regular one-month course to train 
officers to perform the duties of mess offi- 
cers, including mess inspection and menu 
planning. The other was of two weeks' 
duration, and the purpose was to train 
Regular Army, National Guard, and Re- 
serve officers to become instructors in mess 
management at troop schools. For enlisted 
men the program included four separate 

courses designed to train enlisted men to 
become Army cooks, graduate cooks to be- 
come mess sergeants, enlisted men to be- 
come bakers, and graduate cooks to 
become pastry bakers. 

The introduction of new foods, im- 
proved methods of feeding an Army de- 
ployed on many fronts, and other develop- 
ments in the subsistence field made it 
necessary to revise the old courses to some 
extent and to add new ones. For example, 
the increasing use of dehydrated products 
in the Army led to the addition of two new 
short courses in 1942. One of these was de- 
signed to train officers and qualified mess 
sergeants to prepare and serve all types of 
dehydrated foods, alone as well as in com- 



bination with regular ration components. 
The mission of the other was to train offi- 
cers and enlisted men as instructors in the 
preparation and serving of dehydrated 
foods. Three other courses were added to 
the regular curriculum in 1942 for the pur- 
pose of training company grade and field 
grade officers in such matters as changes 
in the handling of rations and the latest 
methods of conserving food. 

Numerous other steps were taken to im- 
prove the training program. Early in 1941 
The Quartermaster General made ar- 
rangements with the National Livestock 
and Meat Board to send crews of its ex- 
perts to all of the schools for bakers and 
cooks to give lectures and practical demon- 
strations in the approved methods of cut- 
ting and cooking meats. Recognizing the 
importance of a standard and more palat- 
able brew of coffee, The Quartermaster 
General inaugurated in 1942 a special 
two-week course in coffee roasting and 
brewing for officers and enlisted personnel. 

One of the most notable steps to im- 
prove the training of cooks and bakers 
and the food program as a whole was 
taken in July 1943 when the Commanding 
General, ASF, issued a directive establish- 
ing the Food Service Program in a move 
to co-ordinate all food activities within his 
command and to foster conservation in the 
handling of food throughout the Army. 
The program provided for more rigid 
supervision and inspection of messes, im- 
proved methods for the preparation, dis- 
tribution, and consumption of food, and 
more efficient technical training for mess 
supervisors, cooks, and bakers. While the 
program was placed under the general di- 
rection of The Quartermaster General, it 
was immediately supervised by the direc- 
tors of food service, appointed by the com- 
manding generals of the service commands, 

who, in turn, designated food supervisors 
at each installation to carry out the details 
of the new conservation measures. The op- 
eration of the Food Service Program 
resulted in a better co-ordinated training 
program in the schools for bakers and 
cooks, a more efficient utilization of mess 
personnel, the preparation of more palat- 
able meals, and a marked improvement in 
the conservation of food. 

The Quartermaster Subsistence Re- 
search Laboratory at the Chicago Quar- 
termaster Depot participated in the 
program for training bakers and cooks be- 
tween 1940 and 1943 by conducting spe- 
cial courses for officers and enlisted men 
in various phases of subsistence. At inter- 
vals during the emergency and the early 
months of the war it offered four-month 
courses to noncommissioned officers in 
subsistence inspection and allied subjects. 
These courses were replaced in March 
1942 by two-week courses for both officers 
and enlisted men in cold-weather cooking 
designed to provide "a suitable diet for 
troops stationed in Alaska and other cold 
regions," which were continued until April 
1943. 15 The laboratory also opened a two- 
month course in October 1941 to train 
officers for service as assistant comman- 
dants of the schools for bakers and cooks, 
but classes were terminated in March 
1942. This course included theoretical 
instruction at the laboratory, followed by 
practical training at the Fort Sheridan 
School of Bakers and Cooks. 

The outstanding feature of the schools 
for bakers and cooks was the centralized 
control exercised by The Quartermaster 
General over training that enabled him to 
provide a uniform program of instruction. 

45 Walter Porges, The Subsistence Research Laboratory 
(CQMD Historical Studies, No, 1, May 1943), pp. 



At the same time, the general operation of 
the schools was hampered by the fact that 
the service commands retained adminis- 
trative control over the schools. The prin- 
cipal weakness of this division of responsi- 
bility was that The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral had no authority to inspect the train- 
ing for which he had promulgated the 
doctrine. 46 

Subsistence School 

Since procurement and storage of sub- 
sistence had been centralized in the depot 
and market center systems during the war 
and most of the key posts were occupied by 
civilian experts, a training problem arose 
in the fall of 1944 when the prospect of an 
early end to the war induced many of the 
civilians to accept jobs in private industry. 
Their resignations threatened to create a 
serious situation because of the lack of 
qualified officers to take their places. 

The Quartermaster General pointed 
out that new post Quartermaster officers 
had acquired little knowledge or experi- 
ence in the procurement of subsistence 
supplies, and emphasized the need for 
prompt action in providing facilities for 
training permanent officer personnel for 
assignment to key positions in the procure- 
ment and storage of subsistence as well as 
in the Food Service Program. 

The dollar volume of subsistence procure- 
ment amounts to over $1,500,000,000 per 
year. An error of as little as one percent 
through the lack of skillful buying would cost 
the government $15,000,000. The tonnage 
volume of subsistence exceeds 20,000 tons per 
day. The loss of even as little as one percent 
through inefficient storage control would re- 
sult in the loss of 400,000 pounds of food per 
day, or more than sufficient food to feed five 
divisions. 47 

Headquarters, ASF, authorized The 

Quartermaster General late in October 
1944 to re-establish and operate the Quar- 
termaster Subsistence School at the Chi- 
cago Depot. The school had been closed in 
1936 and subsequently converted into the 
Subsistence Research and Development 
Laboratory. The director of the labora- 
tory — Col. Roland A. Isker — was named 
commandant of the school when it re- 
opened on 4 December 1944. 

The immediate objective was to give ad- 
vanced instruction to officers in an effort 
to qualify them for overseas subsistence as- 
signments. The original authorization, re- 
vised after the war ended, provided for a 
thirteen-week course and a schedule of 
four classes, each with a quota of twenty 
student officers. Only two of these classes 
had been graduated by V-J Day, and the 
third was in progress. 48 

Officer Training at Depots 

While Quartermaster depots were con- 
cerned primarily with supply operations, 
they contributed materially to the pro- 
gram of advanced training for officers. All 
of the depots during the war conducted 
courses of instruction for officers perma- 
nently assigned to them as well as for offi- 
cers who were in the depot replacement 
pools awaiting assignment. 49 

JS For more detailed accounts of the training and 
inspection of schools for bakers and cooks see (1) Rpt, 
Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned Offs, Pt. I, 
Bakers' and Cooks' Schools Sec; (2) Rpt, Mil Tng 
Div, Schooling of Enlisted Pers, Pt. I, Schools for 
Bakers and Cooks, Sec; (3) Young, Inspection of Mili- 
tary Training, -pp. 17-19, 54-56, 132-33. 

47 Memo, Gen Gregory for CG ASF, 28 Sep 44, 
sub; Establishment of QM Subsistence School, 352.01. 

A more detailed account of the Subsistence 
School appears in Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of 
Commissioned Offs, Pt. II, QM Subsistence Course 

49 The pool system is discussed above in Chapter 



The courses were designed to further 
the training the officers had received at the 
OCS and other Quartermaster installa- 
tions and to provide them with the oppor- 
tunity to apply and expand the knowledge 
previously acquired. They helped to round 
out the experience of the officers and lay 
the groundwork for future assignments 
either in the depots or in units. 

A uniform program of instruction was 
attained, but this was a gradual develop- 
ment rather than an overnight achieve- 
ment. At the outset there were twelve 
Quartermaster depots and their courses 
varied widely. Inasmuch as Reserve offi- 
cers comprised the bulk of commissioned 
personnel assigned to the depots during 
the early stages of expansion and they pos- 
sessed little if any experience in procure- 
ment and storage, all depots were com- 
pelled to provide on-the-job training, but 
each installation modeled its program to 
suit its own particular requirements. In 
the main, the training consisted of simple 
orientation courses, demonstrations in 
warehousing, informal group discussions, 
and lectures. 

The depots acquired a new training re- 
sponsibility after the Quartermaster Offi- 
cer Candidate School was established and 
quotas of the graduates were assigned to 
replacement pools at the various depots. 
The usual practice at first was to appren- 
tice the pool officers to permanently as- 
signed depot officers. The instruction they 
received under this plan was rather hap- 
hazard and, since their OCS training had 
been primarily for field duty, they usually 
failed to acquire an understanding of de- 
pot functions and operations. 

With the sharp expansion of the depot 
system following the United States' entry 
into the war, efforts were made by the de- 
pots to overcome the weaknesses of their 

programs. Each installation, however, ori- 
ginated its own special courses with the re- 
sult that wide variations continued to 
exist. Moreover, most of the programs, 
though they placed greater emphasis upon 
such subjects as materials-handling and 
warehousing, were still restricted in scope, 
being designed primarily to fit selected of- 
ficers for duty in particular depots or 

Preliminary measures to remedy the 
situation and standardize depot training 
activities were initiated by the OQMG 
late in the summer of 1942. At that time 
control over depot training was trans- 
ferred from the Storage and Distribution 
Division to the Military Training Branch, 
which soon was expanded into a division. 
During the fall and winter of 1942-43, the 
Military Training Division issued a series 
of directives to the various depots in an at- 
tempt to have them revise and co-ordinate 
their divergent training programs. It was 
not until the spring of 1943, however, after 
The Quartermaster General ordered the 
adoption of a uniform training program 
for pool and assigned depot officers, that 
there was any concerted effort on the part 
of the depots to bring their training activi- 
ties into general alignment. 50 

By then the program had become ex- 
tremely urgent because the critical short- 
age of commissioned personnel for the 
rapidly growing number of Quartermaster 
units being shipped overseas compelled 
the assignment to field duty of many offi- 
cers from zone of interior depots who had 
never been trained to serve with units, just 
as many officers with no depot training 
were forced to assume supply responsibili- 
ties in the theaters. It was to meet this situ- 
ation that The Quartermaster General is- 

5 " Young, Inspection of Military Training, p. 60. 



sued a directive in which he outlined four- 
week advanced technical training pro- 
grams for assigned and pool officers. 81 The 
most significant features of these programs 
were that, in addition to uniformity, they 
provided for instruction in the operations 
of Quartermaster supply units in overseas 
theaters and for the rotation of students on 
the various types of depot jobs in order to 
give them well-rounded experience. 52 

The release of these newly developed 
training programs did not bring complete 
uniformity in instruction at the depots im- 
mediately. For one thing, The Quarter- 
master General had stipulated that the 
courses were not to interfere with the nor- 
mal operations at the depots. With their 
work loads constantly increasing, some 
commanding officers actually adopted 
only those phases of instruction that could 
be conducted without hindering the per- 
formance of their depots' procurement, 
storage, or manufacturing missions. 53 

Moreover, it soon developed that none 
of the depots were offering satisfactory 
programs of instruction in basic military 
subjects, primarily because they had 
neither adequate facilities nor qualified 
training personnel. To overcome this defi- 
ciency, The Quartermaster General, at the 
direction of ASF headquarters, instructed 
all depots in August 1943 to add a pro- 
gram of concurrent basic military training 
and physical conditioning. 54 Many of the 
depots experienced difficulties in present- 
ing this type of instruction because their 
lack of facilities made it necessary for them 
to transport the students to a nearby camp 
or station. 55 

Following a tour of the depot system in 
January 1944, Brig. Gen. Harold A. 
Barnes, the Deputy Quartermaster Gen- 
eral for Administration and Management, 
reported that while some of the depots 

were doing effective training jobs, others 
were offering only a minimum of instruc- 
tion, and that there was still a general lack 
of uniformity in the programs. He pro- 
posed, therefore, that the Military Train- 
ing Division make a survey of training 
needs and practices at the depots, develop 
a curriculum that would incorporate the 
best features observed at all depots with- 
out interruption to supply operations, and 
then provide close supervision over the 
program to see that it was carried out. The 
division concluded from its survey that de- 
pot training should emphasize problems of 
overseas supply rather than zone of interior 
depot operations, and accordingly, on 19 
February 1944, completed and released a 
sixty-one-hour advanced course in over- 
seas supply and depot operations for the 
guidance of all depots. Moreover, after the 
War Department revised its POR 56 re- 
quirements on 15 May 1944, The Quar- 
termaster General forwarded to the depots 
a personnel status record and check list to 
aid the installations in determining how 
much additional training individual offi- 
cers needed to prepare them for movement 
overseas. 57 
During the spring and summer of 1944, 

51 Ltr, Gen Corbin, Actg TQMG, to CGs of All 
QM Depots and QM Sup Offs of Jointly Occupied 
Depots, 4 Feb 43, sub: Mil Tng Programs, Depot Tng, 
QMC, 352.1 1. 

52 These features had been incorporated earlier in 
the eight- week programs adopted by the Jersey City 
and Philadelphia Depots. 

3:1 Young, Inspection of Military Training, p. 143. 

54 Ltr, Col McReynolds, OQMG, to All QM 
Depots, S3 Aug 43, sub: Mil Tng Program, Depot 
Tng, QMC. 

55 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Pt. I, Depot Training Sec, p. 10. 

ss Preparation for overseas movement of individual 

" ( 1 ) Ltr, TQMG to CGs of All QM Depots and 
QM Sup Offs, ASF Depots, 23 Mar 44, sub: Tng of 
Assigned and Attached QM Pers, and Incl. (2) 
Young, Inspection of Military Training, p. 145. 



depot-training inspections were more fre- 
quent and thorough, and the depots gen- 
erally, despite their continuing difficulties 
in providing training facilities, were exert- 
ing greater efforts to conduct the kind of 
instruction that would enable their officers 
to meet POR standards. By the fall of 
1944, overseas demands for Quartermas- 
ter officers had depleted the supply of 
available commissioned personnel at the 
depots to the point that formal training at 
these installations ended in October. 58 

The most valuable feature of the train- 
ing at depots for assigned and pool officers 
was that the student officer could actually 
participate in the operations he was study- 
ing. Yet while the depots offered this ex- 
cellent opportunity for practical applica- 
tion of technical instruction, by the same 
token they were generally lacking in facili- 
ties and experienced personnel for con- 
ducting basic military training, and conse- 
quently that type of training often was 
neglected to a serious degree. Another out- 
standing weakness was that the training 
task was subordinate to the depots' pri- 
mary mission of supplying troops, and the 
programs frequently had to be conducted 
at odd times and under unusual circum- 
stances. Moreover, most of the officers as- 
signed to the depots experienced so much 
difficulty in learning their own jobs and in 
keeping up with the increasing work loads 
that they had little time to devote to the 
training of other officers. 

In addition to the training given as- 
signed and pool officers at all of the depots, 
special depot courses were conducted at 
the Columbus ASF Depot in Ohio and at 
the Utah ASF Depot in Ogden for Quar- 
termaster and other ASF officers during 
the latter part of the war. Included among 
these were the second and third phases of 
the ASF Depot Course, the first phase of 

which was presented at the Quartermaster 
School. 59 This advanced training was con- 
ducted at the Columbus Depot from April 
1943 until May 1944 when the program 
was transferred to the Utah Depot. The 
initial plan called for presentation of the 
second and third phases in successive two- 
week periods. However, a more practical 
system was adopted whereby the training 
was combined in a four-week course with 
the theoretical instruction of the second 
phase and the on-the-job training of the 
third phase given concurrently in half-day 
periods. In this way the student officers 
learned the duties of the various types of 
depot personnel in the morning and then 
watched these duties being performed in 
the afternoon. 60 

The Packaging, Processing, and Pack- 
ing Course was also conducted at the 
Columbus Depot, with classes beginning 
in November 1944 and continuing until 
15 June 1945. The course was established 
to relieve the shortage of officers experi- 
enced in packing and crating, and the 
Columbus Depot was selected to give the 
training because it possessed the best- 
equipped facilities, including a large box 
shop. The objective was to give officer and 
enlisted personnel on-the-job training in 
the packaging and crating of Quartermas- 
ter supplies for both overseas and domestic 
shipments. The course originally ran four 
weeks but subsequently was condensed into 
three weeks. The later classes placed par- 
ticular stress upon the training of officers 

58 For more detailed discussions of the training of 
assigned and pool officers at depots see (1) Young, 
Inspection oj Military Training, pp. 59-61, 142-46; (2) 
Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned Offs, 
Pt. I, Depot Training Sec; and (3) depot histories on 
file in Hist Br, OQMG. 

ss See above, |pp. 259-60-1 

s " Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Schooling of Commissioned 
Offs, Pt. I, Second and Third Phases, ASF Depot 
Course Sec, pp. 1-8. 



to inspect supplies arriving in overseas the- 
aters and report upon the condition of 
packaging, to act as consultants in prob- 
lems concerning theater packaging, and to 
train personnel to supervise packaging ac- 
tivities in theater depots and other instal- 
lations. 61 

The shortage of qualified officers for 
such key positions as Quartermaster stor- 
age officer and director of storage led to 
the establishment of the Advanced School 
for Storage Officers at the Utah Depot in 
February 1944. The purpose was to pro- 
vide selected officers from Quartermaster 
sections of ASF depots and Quartermaster 
branch depots with a working knowledge 
of all phases of depot warehousing and 
storage methods. The program covered a 
forty-day period of on-the-job-training, 
and, inasmuch as all of the officer students 
already had previous training and experi- 
ence, the instruction was in effect a grad- 
uate course in storage techniques. Confer- 
ence discussions and on-the-job observa- 
tions were combined with work assign- 
ments in an effort to prepare the officers 
for high-level jobs. 62 


Commissioned personnel as well as en- 
listed men in the QMC had to be trained 
as specialists, and the mass production of 
new officers made it necessary to establish 
numerous schools and courses to provide 
the specialized instruction required to pre- 
pare them to carry out the wide variety of 
Quartermaster activities. Some of the 30,- 
000 new officers procured by the Corps 
during the war were commissioned di- 
rectly from civilian life because they pos- 
sessed specific technical skills needed by 
the QMC. Others were Reserve and Na- 
tional Guard officers, nearly all of whom 

required additional training. 

But the greatest number by far — more 
than 23,000 — were graduates of the OCS. 
While the OCS provided some basic 
training in the various Quartermaster 
specialties, its courses of instruction were 
designed primarily to give the candidates 
the training they needed to begin their 
careers as second lieutenants, rather than 
to turn out skilled technicians. Most of the 
graduates therefore were given additional 
training at other installations in an effort 
to make them experts in particular fields, 
such as administration, procurement, or 
distribution, or in one of the specific types 
of Quartermaster services, such as laundry 
operations or clothing and textile repair. 
Many of the graduates, nevertheless, had 
to be assigned directly to units, particu- 
larly during the hurried expansion in 
1942, and became specialists largely as a 
result of practical experience gained in the 

In contrast to the advanced training 
given officers, formal schooling ended for 
the bulk of the enlisted men when they 
completed their training at the QMRTC's 
or in units, where efforts were centered 
upon teaching them the fundamentals of 
their specialties on the assumption that 
they would gain proficiency while actually 
performing their jobs in the field. At the 
same time, advanced courses were con- 
ducted for a portion of the enlisted men to 
prepare them for highly skilled positions as 
noncommissioned officers in Quartermas- 
ter organizations and installations through- 
out the world. 

Much of the advanced training for both 

81 Ibid., Pt. II. Quartermaster Packaging, Process- 
ing and Packing Course Sec., pp. 1-6. 

02 Ibid.. Pt. I, Advanced School for Storage Offs 
Sec, pp. 1-1 3 and Pt. II, same sub, same Sec. pp. 



enlisted men and officers was conducted 
at the Quartermaster School, which ex- 
panded its program enormously after the 
institution was moved from the Schuylkill 
Arsenal to Camp Lee in the fall of 1941. 
Numerous other military installations 
were established for the specialized train- 
ing of Quartermaster personnel. These in- 
cluded motor transport schools in various 
parts of the country, approximately a hun- 
dred bakers' and cooks' schools, and the 
Quartermaster Subsistence School in Chi- 
cago — all in addition, of course, to the 
OCS, the QMRTC's, and the Quarter- 
master unit training centers. Moreover, 
nine Quartermaster ROTC units were or- 
ganized in colleges and universities, and 
programs of advanced instruction for offi- 
cers were set up on a full-time training 
schedule in all of the pools and usually on 
a part-time basis at the various depots. 

Despite the huge expansion in the pro- 
gram of instruction at Army installations, 
military facilities alone were unable to 
meet all of the requirements for training 
Quartermaster specialists, and it became 
necessary for the Corps to request assist- 
ance from factories, commercial trade 
schools, and civilian educational institu- 
tions in training officers and enlisted men 
for certain jobs requiring highly developed 
technical or administrative skills. 

Courses of instruction as well as teach- 
ing methods underwent marked changes 
during the war. The training program had 
to be changed almost constantly to meet 

shifting requirements and the needs aris- 
ing from the development of new Quarter- 
master functions. Aside from the fact that 
the increased complexity of operations 
multiplied the types of specialists required, 
and that Quartermaster officers for the 
first time had to be trained as combat 
leaders as well as technicians, certain 
trends emerged in the course of the train- 
ing program. One of these was the shift in 
emphasis from training officers for garri- 
son duty to preparing them for assignment 
with the field forces, though this trend did 
not occur in any pronounced degree until 
after the United States entered the war. 
The tendency throughout the emergency 
period had been to teach peacetime sub- 
jects and to conduct instruction in an 
academic and theoretical manner. The 
trend after Pearl Harbor was suddenly to- 
ward more practical subjects and more 
realistic training for actual war. 

Another definite trend was toward the 
standardization of programs within the 
various fields of instruction, a standardiza- 
tion that was designed to promote uni- 
formity in technical instruction as well as 
in military training. The mass production 
of new officers and the necessity for hur- 
ried instruction to meet the emergency 
situation required the OQMG to set up an 
extensive program for developing better 
and standardized instructional techniques 
and training aids, and for training the 
many qualified instructors needed to carry 
out the program. 


The Activation and Training of 
Quartermaster Units 

The general policy of the Quartermas- 
ter Corps in World War II was to train 
the soldier first as an individual specialist 
and then to teach him how to work as part 
of a team so that he could perform his par- 
ticular task in the field with members of 
his own and other units. In the period 
1939-45 it was necessary to activate and 
train more than forty different types of 
specialized units to carry out the varied 
Quartermaster functions of providing food, 
clothing, personal equipment, motor and 
pack-animal transportation, and the spe- 
cial services assigned to the Corps by law 
or regulation. 

Numerous changes occurred during the 
war period as the War Department sought 
to adjust its field organization to meet the 
needs of a modern army fighting in all 
parts of the world. As a result, the types of 
units in existence by 1945 differed widely 
from those listed in the 1939 Tables of 
Organization. Many new types were 
established, while some of the old ones as 
well as some of the new ones were found to 
be outmoded or impractical and were dis- 
carded. Moreover, the service require- 
ments of troops varied in mountains, 
jungles, and deserts, and theater com- 
manders, in efforts to meet their special 
needs, sometimes set up supply organiza- 
tions that were not listed in War Depart- 

ment manuals. For this reason it is vir- 
tually impossible to compile a complete 
list of all units that existed at any one time. 
Nevertheless, the most important Quarter- 
master units that were functioning in the 
final stages of the war may be classified in 
eight categories — divisional or organic, 
administrative, supply, transportation, 
petroleum, repair and maintenance, gen- 
eral service and miscellaneous, and com- 
posite. 1 

In contrast to the great bulk of Quarter- 
master units, which were nondivisional 
types and were attached to armies, corps, 
divisions, or other large tactical units as 
needed, Quartermaster organic units were 
integral parts of combat organizations. 
Thus in all cases, except when organic to 
the mountain division, the pack company 
was a nondivisional unit. 2 

Composite units were highly flexible 
organizations consisting of an assembly of 
small detachments or teams, each of which 
was set up to perform a specific function. 
They were designed to provide the partic- 
ular Quartermaster services required by 
small isolated groups such as task forces, or 
station services at ports, depots, and fixed 
posts when standard units were too large 
or too small for the purpose. They could 

SeefTable 17 

: Ibu 



Table 17 — Types of Quartermaster Units in World War II 


QM company, infantry division 
QM company, airborne division 
QM pack company, mountain division 
Supply battalion, armored division 
QM squadron, cavalry division 


Hq & Hq detachment, QM group 

Hq & Hq detachment, QM battalion 

Hq & Hq detachment, QM battalion, mobile 

Hq & Hq detachment, QM base depot 


QM base depot company 

QM depot company, supply 

QM base depot supply and sales company 

QM bakery company 

QM railhead company 

QM refrigeration company, fixed 

QM sales company, mobile 

QM remount troop 

QM platoon, air depot group (aviation) 

QM company, ammunition service group (aviation) 

QM company, service group (aviation) 

QM depot subsistence company (aviation) 

QM truck company 

QM truck company, heavy 

QM troop transport company 

QM car company 

QM refrigeration company, mobile 

QM troop, pack 

QM truck company (aviation) 

QM truck platoon, aviation (separate) 


QM truck company, petroleum 
QM base petroleum supply company 
QM gasoline supply company 
QM petroleum products laboratory 
QM depot company, class III (aviation) 

QM laundry company, semimobile 
QM salvage repair company; fixed 1 

QM salvage repair company, semimobile 1 

QM service company 3 

QM graves registration company 
QM salvage collecting company 
QM fumigation and bath company 3 


1 Both fixed and semimobile salvage repair units included ahoe, clothing, and textile repair sections. 
1 The labor unit of the Army. 

3 Successor to the QM sterilization and bath company. 

Source: Compiled from: (1) WD TM, FM 101-10, 1 Aug 45, sub: Orgn, Tech and Logistical Data, pp. 161-78; and (2) Unit Histories 
in Hist Br, OQMG. 

also be used to augment existing units 
when additional platoons or companies 
would be too large. Composite units varied 
as to the number, size, and types of detach- 
ments included, in accordance with the 
strength of the force or installation to be 
assisted and the specific services required. 

Origin and Development of 
Quartermaster Units 

The work of most Quartermaster units 
was of a technical nature, but these units 
were all nevertheless military organiza- 
tions. They were subject to the same field , 

conditions as other units of the Army, and 
were organized along military lines for ad- 
ministration, discipline, and their own 
defense. This, however, was a modern de- 
velopment. It was not until 1912 that the 
Corps began to function as a strictly mili- 
tary organization. A rider to the Army 
Appropriations Act of that year consol- 
idated the Quartermaster, Subsistence, 
and Pay Departments, thus creating the 
Quartermaster Corps with its own officers 
and troops. 3 In all wars fought up to that 

! (7.5. Statutes at Large, Vol. 37, p. 591 (Act ap- 
proved 24 Aug 12). 



time, from the American Revolution 
through the war with Spain, the actual 
field operations of the Quartermaster's 
Department, though supervised by offi- 
cers, had been carried on primarily by 
civilian employees, or by detachments of 
combat troops when civilians were not 

Although Congress in 1912 had author- 
ized the establishment of Quartermaster 
units, the Corps as organized in 1916, just 
before the United States entered World 
War I, provided for only four types — truck, 
bakery, pack, and wagon companies. 4 

Not very much was accomplished along 
this line of reform until the United States 
entered the first World War, but the change 
came rapidly after that. General John J. Per- 
shing, commanding the American Expedi- 
tionary Forces in France, sent home requisi- 
tions in rapid succession calling for specialized 
supply troops which he found in use in the 
Frencn and British armies. These units were 
organized, trained as far as possible, and 
shipped overseas. By the end of 1917 there 
were twenty-eight different types of Quarter- 
master troop units in existence, placing quar- 
termaster functions for the first time on a 
thoroughly military basis. 5 

Generally speaking, the Quartermaster 
units in World War I were similar in name 
and performed about the same functions 
as those in World War II. However, they 
had been hastily organized and there was 
little time for training or for ironing out 
imperfections before they became opera- 
tional. Their performance, on the whole, 
was creditable and contributed to the suc- 
cess of the American arms in the great bat- 
tles of 1918, but there was much room for 
improvement in these pioneer organiza- 
tions at the time of the Armistice. For 
example, the units were either fixed or of 
limited mobility and it was often necessary 
for the American soldier on the front line 
to "walk back 20 to 25 miles to get his 

'de-lousing' or have his shoes repaired." 6 
In the two decades following the 1918 
Armistice, relatively little was done to 
overcome the weaknesses that the experi- 
ence in France had brought to light in 
units of the QMC and other service organ- 
izations. Although the National Defense 
Act of 1920 had paved the way for mod- 
ernization of the country's military organ- 
ization, sufficient funds were not appro- 
priated because of public apathy and a 
lethargy settled upon the Army with the 
result that progress in many fields, includ- 
ing that of troop-unit modernization, was 
almost at a standstill. One development 
that did take place soon after the 1920 act 
restored the Army transportation function 
to the QMC, however, was the establish- 
ment of motor-transport operating, main- 
tenance, and supply units. 

A revision of all the Quartermaster 
T/O's finally occurred in 1935 as a result 
of efforts by General. Douglas MacArthur, 
then Chief of Staff, to accomplish "an 
orderly program for progressive modern- 
ization of the Army" after "circumstances 
of the first postwar decade had compelled 
the Army to lag behind in adapting its or- 
ganization, equipment and tactical doc- 
trine to modern requirements." 7 It was 
under this revision of tables in the mid- 
thirties that Quartermaster units generally 
were organized on a regimental basis. For 
example, the Quartermaster regiment of 
the infantry division replaced the Quarter- 

4 Manual for the Quartermaster Corps, United States 
Army, 1916 (2 vols., Washington, 1917), I, Art. I, p. 

: ' Thomas M. Pitkin, "Evolution of the Quarter- 
master Corps, 1775-1950," QMR, XXIX (May-June 
1950), p. 109. 

13 Lt Victor L. Gary. "Camp Lee, Va„" QMR, 
XXI (September-October 194-1) p. 24. 

7 Ltr, CofS to TQMG et at, 9 Jul 34, sub: Revi- 
sion of Tng Methods, AG 353 (7-9-34). 



master train, or supply train as it had been 
known in World War I. 

Early in 1939, at the direction of the 
General Staff, The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral requested the Quartermaster Board to 
make a thorough study of all Quartermas- 
ter T/O's and recommend any revisions in 
the tables for motor transport and supply 
units considered necessary to make them 
conform to provisions of the Protective 
Mobilization Plan. He urged that special 
attention be devoted to the problems of 
providing greater mobility and of stand- 
ardizing the various units — company, bat- 
talion, and regiment — so that they could 
be employed in either combat or rear 
areas. s 

Reorganization was under way when 
the outbreak of the war in Europe, the 
President's proclamation of a limited na- 
tional emergency, and the introduction of 
the blitzkrieg type of warfare by the Ger- 
mans in the campaigns of 1939 and 1940 
provided a real impetus for eliminating all 
deficiencies and building the Army to such 
strength that it would be capable of meet- 
ing the modern armies of Europe in actual 
combat. Briefly, in addition to motorizing 
and mechanizing the Army, the modern- 
ization process involved converting the 
outmoded square divisions of World War 
I into smaller, more compact triangular 
divisions, and reorganizing supply troops 
so that they would be able to function 
more efficiently under this streamlining. 

In line with the sharp trend toward mo- 
torization of the Army, the 1939-40 
modernization program naturally gave 
greater mobility to Quartermaster units, 
but it had an equally profound effect upon 
their size and flexibility of organization. In 
the first place, there was a decided trend 
toward reduction in the size of units. For 
example, the T/ O for the old square in- 

fantry division had provided for a Quar- 
termaster regiment to perform the normal 
Quartermaster functions required by the 
division. Under the shift to the triangular 
form of organization, the division had 
fewer men than before, and therefore the 
organic Quartermaster regiment was re- 
placed by a battalion. Later on, in the fall 
of 1942, when automotive maintenance 
was transferred from Quartermaster to 
Ordnance jurisdiction, the work load of 
the Quartermaster organic unit in the 
division was reduced still further, and the 
battalion was replaced by a company. 9 

Nondivisional types of units also experi- 
enced this process. The Quartermaster 
regiment virtually disappeared in the 
1939-40 reorganization. Quite a few bat- 
talions were retained at that time, but the 
search for greater flexibility through re- 
duction in the size of units continued. By 
the fall of 1943 further revisions of tables 
had eliminated the fixed-size battalion as 
well as the regiment from the Quarter- 
master organization, and the company be- 
came the basic T/O unit as it did in most 
of the other supply services. 10 

The company itself, normally the small- 
est operating unit, acquired much more 
flexibility in the 1939-40 reorganization. 

"(1) Ltr, Maj Gen Henry Gibbins, TQMG, to 
President QM Bd, 26 Jan 39, sub: Revision of T/O 
of Certain QM Units. (2) Ltr, Gibbins to same, 26 
Apr 39, same sub, 320.3. 

" (1) T/O 10-271, 1 Nov 40, sub: QM Regiment 
(Inf Div, Square). (2) T/O 10-17, 15 Sep 42, sub: 
QM Co, Inf Div. 

10 The only fixed-size battalions in the QMC after 
that were those in the 2d and 3d Armored Divisions, 
which were permitted to retain their Quartermaster 
supply battalions despite the fact that this organic 
unit was eliminated from all other armored divisions 
after the revision of the T/O on 15 September 1943. 
See Kent Roberts Greenfield, Robert R. Palmer, and 
Bell I. Wiley, 1 he Organization of Ground Combat Troops, 
(Washington, 1947), p. 327. 



It was re-established on an organizational 
basis that permitted it to be broken down 
into several functional groups, each de- 
signed to perform its mission independ- 
ently whenever necessary. The laundry 
company, as an illustration, consisted of a 
company headquarters and four platoons, 
each comprised of two sections. Each 
platoon had its own headquarters to super- 
vise the work of its two sections, and the 
section rather than the company became 
the smallest operating unit. This same 
principle of organization was followed in 
other Quartermaster units, such as truck, 
bakery, service, salvage, railhead, depot, 
sterilization and bath, refrigeration, graves 
registration, and sales commissary com- 
panies, though the platoon instead of the 
section usually was the smallest operating 

The central purpose of the program for 
revising the Quartermaster T/ O's was to 
provide a more flexible system that would 
meet fluctuating requirements for service 
troops and at the same time conserve man- 
power. Fixed-size regiments and battalions 
were wasteful in that the number of men 
permanently assigned to them rarely coin- 
cided with the number needed to perform 
the jobs in a specific operation. With the 
elimination of these larger units and the 
setting up of a smaller, independent unit — 
the company — as the basic operating unit, 
requirements could be met more efficiently 
and economically by assembling com- 
panies in the numbers or types needed for 
a particular purpose. For example, Quar- 
termaster truck companies could be 
grouped in accordance with specific re- 
quirements for a special transportation 
job, or different types of units, such as 
truck, refrigeration, gasoline supply, sal- 
vage repair, service, and laundry com- 
panies, could be assembled to carry out a 

variety of activities in a particular area. 

This new plan of bringing orphan com- 
panies together in varying numbers and 
types made it necessary to have an equally 
flexible administrative setup for co-ordi- 
nating and supervising their work. Bat- 
talion and group headquarters and head- 
quarters detachments were created for this 
purpose. The Quartermaster battalion 
headquarters detachment, as contrasted 
with the old-type, fixed-size battalion 
which it replaced, was fluid, being de- 
signed to administer from two to six com- 
panies, either assigned or attached. When 
large-scale operations required the services 
of a number of battalions, the battalions 
were placed under the supervision of a 
group headquarters and headquarters de- 
tachment — successor to the fixed-size 
regiment. Normally the Quartermaster 
group headquarters was provided in the 
ratio of one to three or four battalions, but 
it was capable of handling a greater ad- 
ministrative load. During the Normandy 
Campaign, for instance, one group head- 
quarters directed the activities of seven 
battalions comprising thirty-seven com- 
panies of various types. 11 

The group system replaced the regiment 
not only in the tactical organization but, 
by late 1944, in the supervision of training 
as well, and proved particularly well 
adapted because of its flexibility and econ- 
omy in the use of overhead personnel. 

For supervision of training, service units, 
especially quartermaster and ordnance, were 
primarily affected. A group headquarters 
which proved especially effective in the train- 
ing of Negro troops could be left undisturbed 

11 (1) OQMG Rpt, Organization and Functions of 
Quartermaster Units, 30 Nov 45, Sec. on QM Group 
Hq and Hq Detachments and QM Battalion Hq and 
Hq Detachments. (2) Ltr, Hq AGF to All CGs, 16 
Oct 43, sub: QM Sv in the Fid. 



as successive increments of units came under 
its supervision and passed on to a port of em- 
barkation. In the theater the group system 
made it possible to attach Negro or white 
units to a group headquarters as needed or 
desired. Negro units especially gained in 
strength, usefulness, and experience by the 
operation of this plan. 12 

As a means of increasing mobility, pro- 
visions were made in the 1939-40 revision 
of the T/O's for various types of mobile 
Quartermaster units — mobile shoe repair 
shops, mobile laundries, mobile commis- 
sary units, mobile sterilization and bath 
outfits, and mobile maintenance units. 
Most of these organizations, however, ex- 
isted only on paper for many months, 
primarily because no funds were available 
for the necessary mobile equipment. 13 It 
was 1941 before the money had been ap- 
propriated and the equipment began roll- 
ing off assembly lines. 

It was anticipated that such units would 
keep pace with the fast-moving motorized 
combat troops and be able to operate near 
the front lines. Actually, these so-called 
mobile units were only semimobile, and 
they failed to live up to expectations when 
put to the test in the North African cam- 
paign. Their equipment was too bulky and 
too heavy, and was installed in cumber- 
some vans moved by tractors. All of the 
equipment, therefore, was completely re- 
designed to be more compact, weigh less, 
and have greater maneuverability. It was 
late in the war before the new mobile 
equipment was in production, and com- 
paratively little of it ever reached the 
front. 14 

Most of the 1939-40 revisions in the 
T/ O's were directed toward modernizing 
and refining Quartermaster units already 
in existence, but a number of distinctly 
new types were created on paper to be 
activated and trained in the event of 

mobilization. Most notable among these 
were: (1) the depot company, supply, 
which was designed to provide administra- 
tive and technical personnel for a Quarter- 
master supply depot in a theater of oper- 
ations; (2) the gasoline supply company, 
whose function was to break down bulk 
deliveries of gasoline and lubricants re- 
ceived at railheads, truckheads, and refill- 
ing points and distribute them to troops in 
the field; (3) the port headquarters, to be 
organized for the purpose of directing 
housekeeping and local transportation 
functions at ports established in overseas 
theaters of operations; 15 and (4) the Quar- 
termaster port battalion, comprised of four 
companies, whose function was to provide 
the common labor required to load and 
discharge vessels in theaters of operations. 

Many of the depot supply and gasoline 
supply companies were activated and 
trained during the war and proved invalu- 
able in carrying out Quartermaster func- 
tions in the theaters. On the other hand, 
the comparatively few Quartermaster port 
battalion and port headquarters units that 
had been activated by the summer of 1942 
were redesignated and transferred to the 
Transportation Corps, which was created 
at that time to handle rail and water trans- 
portation. Similarly, hundreds of motor- 
repair and maintenance units of various 
types that had been activated and trained 
as Quartermaster organizations were 
placed under the jurisdiction of the Ord- 

12 Palmer et al., The Procurement and Training of 
Ground Combat Troops, p. 521. 

13 Memo, ACofS G-3 for GofS, 4- Jun 40, sub: Ac- 
tivation of Certain QM Units, 320.2. 

14 See Risch, The Quartermaster Corps: Organization, 
Supply, and Services Al, Chap. 1V| 

ls It was contemplated that most of the duties at 
ports of embarkation and debarkation in the United 
States during mobilization would be performed by 
civilian personnel supervised by officers as they were 
in peacetime. 



nance Department with the transfer of 
the motor-maintenance function to that 
agency in August 1942. 

Tables of Organization and Equipment 
(T/O&E's) were combined in mid-1943 
for the convenience of field commanders, 
and became subject to almost constant re- 
vision as efforts were made to adjust unit 
organization and equipment to actual 
conditions encountered in the various 
combat areas throughout the world. More- 
over, beginning with the North African 
campaign late in 1942, experience in the 
theaters forced the development of other 
new types of Quartermaster units to meet 
the needs of modern warfare. For ex- 
ample, the greatly multiplied require- 
ments for oil, gasoline, and lubricants 
resulting from the increased mobilization 
and mechanization of the Army led to the 
creation of new types of units for handling, 
storing, transporting, testing, and inspect- 
ing petroleum and petroleum products. 
The Quartermaster base petroleum supply 
company was established to receive and 
store petroleum products at communica- 
tions zone depots, tank farms, or petro- 
leum pipeline terminals, and to supervise 
the distribution of bulk gasoline and lubri- 
cants to canning points where drum-clean- 
ing and filling platoons were set up to 
clean, inspect, repair, and fill 55-gallon 
drums. The Quartermaster large-drum 
manufacturing company was created to 
provide personnel for operating a plant to 
manufacture the 55-gallon drums in areas 
where the containers were not readily 
available. A versatile heavy truck com- 
pany was established to serve as a truck 
company (petroleum) when equipped 
with tank semitrailers for hauling bulk 
petroleum products, and as a truck com- 
pany (heavy) when utilizing stake-and- 
platform trailers for hauling other cargo. 

Petroleum products laboratories were 
created to provide personnel and equip- 
ment for testing and inspecting petroleum 
products and equipment in the field, in- 
cluding the testing of captured enemy 
material to determine its usability. 

The urgent need for an organization 
that could shoulder the responsibility for 
sorting the mountains of food, clothing, 
gasoline, and tentage suddenly dumped 
from ships on enemy soil and moving them 
quickly and efficiently to advancing troops 
after a beachhead had been established 
led to the development of the headquar- 
ters and headquarters company, Quarter- 
master base depot. The primary mission of 
this unit was to classify, stack, and protect 
from weather and insects the hundreds of 
different items unloaded more or less 
chaotically on the shore, and then to 
establish the necessary administrative and 
supervisory machinery for baking bread, 
washing laundry, chilling food, repairing 
clothing, organizing transportation, and 
providing other Quartermaster services for 
the fighting men. This company could be 
attached either to a base general depot or 
to a branch Quartermaster depot, both 
located in the communications zone. It 
consisted of a headquarters, a headquar- 
ters company, and six divisions — executive, 
supply, petroleum, laundry, salvage, and 
graves registration. It was the largest of all 
the Quartermaster administrative units, 
normally comprising 34 officers, 2 warrant 
officers, and 118 enlisted men. 

The base depot company was created to 
operate in conjunction with the headquar- 
ters and headquarters company, Quarter- 
master base depot, its function being to 
furnish technical personnel for the receipt, 
storage, and issue of subsistence, clothing, 
equipment, and general supplies. One 
company was designed to operate either 



the Quartermaster section of a base depot 
or a branch Quartermaster depot when 
supplies were being provided for no more 
than 100,000 troops. When a base depot 
served in excess of 100,000 men, two or 
more Quartermaster depot companies 
were assigned to the installation and 
served under the supervision of the head- 
quarters and headquarters company, 
Quartermaster base depot. 

Just as the Quartermaster sales com- 
pany, mobile, was designed to sell nonissue 
items on a nonprofit basis to combat troops 
in forward areas, so the Quartermaster 
depot supply and sales company was 
established to operate retail sales facilities 
for depot personnel and troops in the 
vicinity of a base general hospital, a 
branch Quartermaster depot, or a port of 
embarkation in order to supply such 
morale-maintaining items as cigarettes, to- 
bacco, candy, writing paper, razor blades, 
and toilet articles, as well as officers' 
clothing and insignia. An additional func- 
tion of the depot supply and sales com- 
pany was to supervise and operate the 
labor and motor pool at the installation to 
which it was attached. 

Most of the other types of Quartermas- 
ter units in World War II were modernized 
versions of World War I prototypes. In 
some instances the names were identical, 
as in the case of bakery companies and 
laundry companies. More often the no- 
menclature was changed, though the units 
performed similar but more highly devel- 
oped functions. For example, the labor 
battalion of World War I was superseded 
by the service company, the ice plant com- 
pany gave way to the refrigeration com- 
pany, the graves registration section 
became the graves registration company, 
and the conservation and reclamation 
company was replaced by the salvage re- 

pair company. The latter unit was semi- 
mobile and carried shoemakers, tailors, 
and canvas repairmen directly to ad- 
vanced areas to make on-the-spot repairs 
of critical Quartermaster items. 

The railhead company, which received, 
broke down, and issued supplies at rail- 
heads, truckheads, navigation heads, 
beachheads, and other supply points and 
thus served as the last connecting link in 
the long chain of supply from the farm and 
factory to the fighting men, had no proto- 
type in World War I. Usually this kind of 
work was performed in 1917-18 by labor 
units under the direction of experienced 
checkers.] 6 

On the other hand, some of the units 
utilized in World War I were found to be 
outmoded. The traditional wagon com- 
panies, for example, disappeared under 
the motorization process. Pack-animal 
units, however, were still used widely in 
areas where mud, jungles, and mountains 
made motor transportation impossible. 
These pack outfits played an important 
role in keeping supply lines open in Sicily, 
Italy, Burma, and China. 

The outstanding organizational devel- 
opment in Quartermaster units during 
World War II was the trend toward more 
and more flexibility that culminated in the 
establishment of composite units. The sug- 
gestion for creating the composite type of 
organization in which service troops could 
be grouped into flexible units designed to 
fit supply situations under varying condi- 
tions was made late in 1942 by General 
George C. Marshall, then Chief of Staff: 

16 Operations of the Quartermaster Corps U.S. Army Dur- 
ing the World War, "Notes on Army, Corps and Divi- 
sion Quartermaster Activities in the American Ex- 
peditionary Forces — France." (QM School Mono- 
graph 9, Schuylkill Arsenal, Philadelphia, n. d.), p. 



I don't think we have followed the most 
efficient and economical system in regard to 
the organization of service troops. Where a 
complete Engineer regiment is required, for 
example, then the present organization is 
satisfactory. But in the numerous cases where 
smaller groups are required, then I think our 
methods are extravagant and do not promote 
coordinate direction and leadership, particu- 
larly during moments of critical operations. 

It seems to me that we should have these 
service units so set up that we can put to- 
gether composite battalions, composite regi- 
ments, and composite brigades, so that they 
will have one directing head and we shall 
avoid unnecessary and complicating over- 
head of various higher headquarters. 17 

General Marshall's plan, with modifica- 
tions, was adopted in 1943, but it was 
March 1944 before "tailor-made" Quar- 
termaster cellular units finally became 
available to combat forces for utilization 
in areas where it was not desirable or prac- 
tical to use standard Quartermaster 
organizations. At that time the Quarter- 
master service organization table (T/O&E 
10-500) was published setting up teams or 
cells of varying size, each designed to per- 
form its particular function for a specific 
number of troops. From this table the the- 
ater commander could select the correct- 
size teams or combination of teams he 
needed, group them under appropriate 
headquarters, and organize them into 
composite units. However, instead of com- 
posite regiments and brigades as General 
Marshall had proposed, T/O&E 10-500 
provided only for composite battalions, 
composite companies, and composite 
platoons, though teams could be used in- 
dividually to augment standard Quarter- 
master companies or could even be 
assigned to units of fixed size in other serv- 
ices. A laundry team, for example, could 
be assigned to a hospital company of the 
Medical Department. When more exten- 
sive services were required than could be 

supplied by a composite battalion, the 
flexible group system made it possible to 
assemble two or more battalions under a 
group headquarters and headquarters de- 

The available services were classified by 
T/O&E 10-500 in the following seven 

1. Administrative (headquarters, mess 
teams, and auto mechanic teams). 

2. Supply (supply, sales, bakery, and 
remount sections). 

3. Transportation (passenger vehicles, 
cargo vehicle, mobile refrigeration, and 
pack-animal sections). 

4. Repair (shoe, textile, and equipment 
repair units). 

5. Laundry and dry cleaning. 

6. Petroleum (laboratory, can cleaning, 
and petroleum dispensing units). 

7. Miscellaneous (graves registration, 
fumigation and bath, salvage collection, 
and labor units). 

The classification was broken down fur- 
ther into the teams of various sizes avail- 
able to perform specific types of functions, 
such as mess, shoe repair, or salvage collec- 
tion. Each team was designated by an 
alphabetical symbol and the table spec- 
ified its operating capacity in terms of the 
number of troops it was set up to serve. 
Thus when the strength of the troops to be 
served was known, it was comparatively 
simple to select from the approximately 
eighty types of teams the precise combina- 
tion desired. For example, three types of 
bakery teams were listed. Team BF was 
designed to operate one shift and furnish 
bread for 800 troops. Team BG combined 
with team BF required no additional 
equipment but permitted the operation of 
a second shift, and the combined teams 

L ' Memo, CofS for CG SOS et al., 29 Dec 42, no 



could provide bread for 1,200 troops. The 
third type, team BH, was set up to bake 
bread for 5,000 individuals. The flexibility 
provided by this system made it possible to 
select the combination of teams which 
could meet the requirements of an armed 
force of almost any given size that could 
not be served economically by a regular 
bakery company. 

Despite the seeming simplicity of the 
way in which the service organization sys- 
tem was set up, it became apparent early 
in 1945 that the principles underlying the 
organization and use of cellular tables 
were not generally understood, and that 
full advantage was not being taken of the 
possibilities for establishing composite 
units. It was necessary, therefore, at that 
late date to launch a program for educat- 
ing staff agencies in the use and back- 
ground of the tables. 18 

Comparatively few composite units were 
organized and trained in the zone of in- 
terior during the war. Inasmuch as they 
were designed to meet the variable and 
often rapidly changing conditions encoun- 
tered in theaters of operations composite 
units did not lend themselves readily to a 
program of training in the United States. 
By the time a theater commander submit- 
ted his requisition and the unit could be 
put together and trained it was likely that 
the particular need for it would no longer 
exist. Consequently, composite units gen- 
erally were organized and trained in the 
theaters as needs arose, 

The Corps' Limited Responsibility 
for Unit Training 

One of the standing grievances of Maj. 
Gen. Edmund B. Gregory, The Quarter- 
master General in World War II, was that 
while he was responsible for training en- 

listed men and officers to serve in Quarter- 
master units, he had extremely limited 
jurisdiction over the actual training of the 
units themselves, and yet he had to "take 
the rap" for those which performed un- 
satisfactorily in the field. He contended 
that since he had to shoulder the blame for 
any deficiencies of the units he should 
have the entire responsibility for training 
them. 19 

As a matter of fact, it was eight months 
after Pearl Harbor before he was granted 
any authority to activate and train Quar- 
termaster troop units. Even after that, the 
AGF and the service commands continued 
to exercise more control over the training 
of the ground units than he did, while the 
AAF trained all of the Quartermaster 
aviation units. The result was that much 
of the time there was little uniformity in 
the training given Quartermaster organ- 
izations to carry on their functions in the 

Before March 1942, the training of all 
ground troop units was a function of Gen- 
eral Headquarters, U. S. Army (GHQJ, 
which delegated the mission to its subor- 
dinate armies. In addition, until June 1941 
when the Army Air Forces was organized, 
GHQwas responsible for training all avia- 
tion units though it delegated this mission 
to the GHQ Air Force. Each corps area 
was responsible for organizing and train- 
ing the Quartermaster units assigned to it 
to carry out its supply and administrative 
duties. The sole responsibility of The 
Quartermaster General in regard to units 
was to furnish the training doctrine, and 
this was followed only when the com- 

18 Lt Col Robert C. McKechnie, "Practical Use of 
Cellular Tables," QMR, XXIV (March-April 1945), 
p. 63. 

IB Statement, Gen Gregory, QM Co nf, Camp Lee, 
2-4 Oct 44. 



mander in charge of training a unit was 
inclined to do so. Although many new 
Quartermaster units were activated fol- 
lowing the passage of the Selective Service 
Act in 1940, no change was made in the 
supervision of their training. Furthermore, 
regardless of whether the units were 
activated and trained under GHQ or 
corps area control, they generally were 
stationed at posts, camps, or stations more 
in accordance with the availability of 
housing space than with training facilities 
and qualified instructors. The new units 
received their cadres from Regular Army 
units and their fillers from Regular Army, 
Reserve, National Guard, and selectee 
sources. 20 

Demands for new Quartermaster units 
at zone of interior and overseas defense in- 
stallations were even more urgent by the 
spring of 1941, and the General Staff 
turned to the newly established replace- 
ment training centers as the best available 
agencies to supply the critically needed or- 
ganizations. Consequently the first train- 
ing cycle at the QMRTC's at Camp Lee 
and Fort Warren was devoted to a form of 
preactivation unit training in which the 
men were trained specifically as fillers for 
about a hundred Quartermaster units and 
were then assembled into those units at the 
QMRTC's before activation of the units 
at other installations. The demand for ad- 
ditional service units was so great during 
this cycle, which extended from March to 
the latter part of June 1941, that many 
Quartermaster units continued to be 
trained at scattered posts, camps, and sta- 
tions under GHQ or corps area control. 

Upon completion of the first training 
cycle the two QMRTC's assumed their in- 
tended role of training individual replace- 
ments for utilization wherever needed 
instead of as fillers for specific units. Thus 

the situation in regard to Quartermaster 
units was little changed from what it had 
been before March 1941 in that the activa- 
tion and training of the units remained 
under the control, generally speaking, of 
the field armies and corps areas, and the 
availability of housing was still the pri- 
mary factor in determining which agency 
would conduct the training. 

Even though The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral by then had acquired the authority to 
conduct all training at the QMRTC's and 
the various Quartermaster depots, 21 just as 
he did at the Quartermaster School, the 
fact was that comparatively few units were 
ever assigned to any of these installations 
for training during the emergency period 
or the first year of the war, and therefore 
the training supervision of The Quarter- 
master General during that period was 
confined almost entirely to instruction of 
enlisted men and officers as individuals. 

Meanwhile, several high-level adminis- 
trative changes provided the basis for es- 
tablishing the pattern that was to be fol- 
lowed in determining just which command 
would be responsible for the training of 
particular types of Quartermaster units. 
First, the establishment of the AAF, with 
the Air Force Combat Command replac- 
ing the GHQ Air Force, in June 1941 re- 
sulted in the transfer from GHQ to the 
AAF of the responsibility for activating 
and training Quartermaster aviation 
units. 22 The effect of this development was 
that, since The Quartermaster General 
had had no jurisdiction over these units up 
to that time and the AAF thereafter had 
autonomous control, he never acquired 

2U (1) AR 170-10, 10 Oct 39, sub: CAs and Depts. 
(2) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Training of Units, Pt. I, pp. 
2-3. (3) Young, Inspection of Military Training, pp. 1-2. 

21 AR 170-10, Change 1, 3L Mar 41, sub: CAs and 

22 AR 95-5, par. 3a, 2 1 Jun 4 1 , sub: AAF. 



any degree of authority over the training 
or inspection of aviation units. 

Secondly, with the abolition of GHQin 
the general reorganization of the War De- 
partment on 9 March 1942, the responsi- 
bility for organizing and training Quarter- 
master units assigned or attached to the 
subordinate field armies passed to the 
newly created AGF. At the same time, the 
corps areas, which had a hand in the 
training of nondivisional Quarter master 
units, became subordinate to the SOS, as 
did the QMC and the other supply 

It was not made clear immediatelyjust 
what responsibility the SOS and its subor- 
dinate agencies and chiefs of services, such 
as The Quartermaster General, were to 
have in the training of nondivisional units. 
In fact, it was May 1942 before the War 
Department attempted to end the confu- 
sion that existed among the new major 
commands as to the extent of their respon- 
sibility for such units. At that time the 
General Staff laid down the principle that 
"in general, the using command will train 
a unit" and directed that the Command- 
ing General, SOS, would be "responsible 
for the training of units organized to op- 
erate installations and activities controlled 
by him and those units organized in the 
United States solely for Services of Supply 
installations and activities in overseas gar- 
risons, bases, and theaters." 23 

This ruling was helpful so far as it went, 
but it still left unsettled the question of 
whether the SOS or the AGF was to train 
the types of service organizations, such as 
Quartermaster truck, graves registration, 
salvage, and other units, which could be 
organized in the United States for opera- 
tion in either the combat or the communi- 
cations zones. Nevertheless the Command- 
ing General, SOS, late injuly 1942, after 

redesignating the corps areas as service 
commands, issued a general training di- 
rective in which he attempted to define the 
unit training responsibilities of his subordi- 
nate services and agencies. He vested in 
the service commands the general respon- 
sibility for training all SOS units "except 
for those units exempted by the Com- 
manding General, Services of Supply." 
The authority for training the units that 
he exempted from service command con- 
trol was delegated to the "Chiefs of the ap- 
propriate Supply or Administrative Serv- 
ice concerned." 24 

This meant that The Quartermaster 
General at last had been granted definite 
authority to organize and train Quarter- 
master units, even though his authority 
was to be restricted to those units specifi- 
cally assigned to him by the Commanding 
General, SOS. Before that his only respon- 
sibility had been to prepare the doctrine 
for their training, and this was purely 
academic since his programs served only 
as standardized suggestions for the training 
and he had no means of determining the 
nature of the doctrine actually employed 
or the results obtained. 

The Quartermaster General's oppor- 
tunity to exercise his newly acquired con- 
trol over unit training was quite limited 
during the last half of 1942 and the early 
part of 1943 because the SOS was able to 
place only a comparatively small number 
of units under his jurisdiction. 25 The prin- 
cipal reason was that while the War De- 
partment made a further attempt to clari- 
fy jurisdiction as between the AGF and 
the SOS by listing periodically certain 

23 Memo, ACofS G-3 for CG SOS et ai., 30 May 
42, sub: Responsibility for Tng. 

24 Ltr, CG SOS to TQMG et al, 28 Jul 42, sub: 
Unit Tn g Within t he SOS. 

" See (Table 18. 


Table 18 — Units Trained by the Office of The Quartermaster General 

Quartermaster Units 












Hq & Hq Detachments or Companies, QM Battalions 






Bakery Units 




Depot Companies (Supply) _ _ 






Fumigation and Bath Companies _ 




Graves Registration Companies 





Hq & Hq Companies QM Base Depot 






Laundry Units 






Petroleum Products Laboratories ... ... ... 




Drum Service Units 



Railhead Companies. .... 




Refrigeration Companies . . . 





Remount Squadron (Troops) . .... ... 




Sales Companies . .. .... ... . 




Salvage Collecting Companies.. ... _ . 




Salvage Repair Companies . . _ . _ _ 






Service Companies . . .. _ . . 






Truck Units.. .. . . 




Miscellaneous Units _ . 




Dog Platoons 




* Actually these six were given their final unit training by the AGF. 

Sourct: Rpt, Mi! Tng Div for TQMG, 11 Sep 45, sub : Outstanding Accomplishments in World War II, p. 22. 

units that were to be controlled by each of 
the commands, the question of training 
authority remained unsettled as the same 
types of units, namely truck and depot 
supply companies, continued to be found 
on the assignment lists of both commands, 
and the two commands frequently were 
unable to agree on the control and train- 
ing of units that could be employed either 
in the zone of interior or in combat areas. 
The War Department finally ended the 
confusion in the spring of 1943 by ruling 
that the disputed units would be activated 
and trained by the AGF. Thus The Quar- 
termaster General lost control over such 
units as truck and depot supply companies 
within a relatively short time after he had 
acquired the authority to activate and 
train them. 26 

Meanwhile, The Quartermaster Gen- 
eral late in October 1942 expressed con- 
cern over the haphazard training being 
given Quartermaster units at scattered 
posts, camps, and stations and recom- 
mended that he be granted the authority 
to establish a unit training center in order 
that he might standardize and improve 
the training of Quartermaster units as- 
signed to the SOS. 

Inspections have disclosed that many 
Quartermaster units are not furnished cadres, 
do not receive their fillers and equipment, 
and, in many cases, are not stationed where 
technical training facilities are available or 
where there is a commander qualified or in- 

213 (1) Memo, ACofS G-3 for CofS, 30 Dec 42, sub: 
Tng Sv Units. (2) Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Units, 
Pt. I, pp. 66-67. 



terested in their training. In addition, prior 
to completion of training, units have been 
employed on activities other than that for 
which activated and for which they should 
receive training prior to overseas assign- 
ment. . . . 

The establishment of a Unit Training Cen- 
ter wherein unit training for all types of units 
can be conducted is most desirable. Such a 
training center would be better prepared and 
able to conduct training than any other com- 
mand. Furthermore, the Chief of Service can 
select and transfer men from one unit to 
another on determined qualifications, and by 
the use of a small casual detachment rear- 
range specialists in the various units and fur- 
nish cadres. Officers and non-commissioned 
officers can be better trained with an instruc- 
tor guidance program, and the use of train- 
ing aids of all types including training films 
and charts can be employed. 27 

Headquarters, SOS, soon to be redesig- 
nated the ASF, approved the proposal two 
months later, when facilities finally be- 
came available for this purpose. The first 
Quartermaster unit training center was es- 
tablished at Vancouver Barracks, Wash., 
on 10 January 1943. 28 Although it was 
stipulated that the facilities of this instal- 
lation were to be utilized by the QMC 
only temporarily pending the completion 
of the new ASF unit training center at 
Camp Ellis, Lewiston, 111., and only fifty- 
three Quartermaster units were trained at 
the center before it closed in the fall of 
1943, 29 the program was significant. It 
marked the inauguration of a new system 
that did much to standardize and im- 
prove Quartermaster unit training as well 
as help to relieve the congestion at other 
posts, camps, and stations. 

The experiment at Vancouver Barracks 
proved satisfactory from the start and steps 
were taken in the spring of 1943 to expand 
the Quartermaster unit training program. 
One of the first moves was to cancel the 
provision that the Quartermaster center 

be moved to Camp Ellis upon completion 
of that new installation. Instead, one half 
of the Quartermaster training staff at Van- 
couver Barracks was transferred to Carnp 
Ellis in mid-April, while operations at 
Vancouver Barracks continued officially 
until the middle of September. At that 
time the center was transferred without 
personnel or equipment to Fort Warren, 
though the eighteen Quartermaster units 
that had been activated at Vancouver 
Barracks in July continued their training 
there until the end of October. 30 The Fort 
Warren QMRTC had been discontinued 
and its personnel and facilities were uti- 
lized to operate the Wyoming installation 
as a Quartermaster unit training center 
through V-J Day. 

Although their locations shifted, The 
Quartermaster General had two unit 
training centers under his jurisdiction 
throughout most of 1943 and the early 
part of 1944 — the peak period for activa- 
tions — and thus was able to exercise a con- 
siderable degree of control over the train- 
ing of Quartermaster units that were as- 
signed to the ASF. However, the limited 
housing capacities of the two centers made 
it impossible to train all of the new organi- 
zations as fast as they were being formed. 
Many Quartermaster units therefore con- 
tinued to be trained at scattered service 

27 (1) Memo, TQJVIG for ACofS for Opns, 28 Oct 
42, sub; QMC Units. (2) A similar suggestion, ex- 
tended to include unit training centers for all arms 
and services, had been advocated by Maj. Gen. Wal- 
ter L. Weible when he was a captain in the old 
Training Branch of the G-3 Division of the War De- 
partment General Staff preparing mobilization plans 
during the emergency period. Ltr, Gen Weible to 
Maj Gen Orlando Ward, Chief, OCMH, 3 Apr 52, 
no sub. 

28 Ltr, AGO to TQMG et al., 1 Jan 43, sub: Es- 
tablishment of QM UTC, Vancouver Barracks, Wash. 

29 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Units, Pt. I, Van- 
couver Barracks Sec, p. 22. 

30 Ibid., pp. 15, 20. 



command posts even though the facilities 
of both Gamp Lee and the Quartermaster 
School were pressed into service to train 
certain units in an effort to meet the criti- 
cal need for Quartermaster organizations. 

The basic function of the Camp Lee 
QMRTC from its inception in 1941 had 
been to supply cadres for Quartermaster 
units to be activated elsewhere, but from 
time to time a few miscellaneous units had 
been activated and trained there. General 
Gregory had expressed the conviction 
from the early days of the war that the 
highly developed shops, specialized equip- 
ment, and qualified personnel at the 
QMRTC were particularly well suited for 
the training of Quartermaster units and 
that the center should be utilized in part 
for that purpose. It was December 1943, 
however, before he obtained authority to 
establish unit training as a regularly as- 
signed function at Camp Lee. The pro- 
gram, which continued throughout the re- 
mainder of the war, began with the 
activation of thirty-four laundry platoons 
but was expanded later to include many 
other types of units. 31 

The unit training program at the Quar- 
termaster School, on the other hand, was 
of an emergency nature and limited in 
scope. Only eight companies, all of the 
same type — headquarters and headquar- 
ters company, Quartermaster base depot — 
were trained at the Quartermaster School 
in the emergency program conducted 
there between October 1943 and June 
1944. 32 

While the bulk of the unit training pro- 
gram had been completed by the spring of 
1944, another Quartermaster unit training 
center was opened in March of that year. 
This center — the last established during 
the war — was set up at the Fort Devens 
ASF Unit Training Center, Ayer, Mass., 

primarily to train service companies and 
relieve the Camp Ellis Quartermaster 
training group of its heavy training pro- 
gram for Negro enlisted men. Eventually, 
with the inactivation of the group at Camp 
Ellis in mid-October 1944, Fort Devens 
took over the function formerly assigned to 
the Illinois center and continued in opera- 
tion until the spring of 1945. 33 

Records in the Military Training Divi- 
sion, OQMG, at the end of the war show 
that between July 1942, when the Com- 
manding General, SOS, delegated unit 
training authority to him, and V-J Day, 
The Quartermaster General activated and 
trained nearly 850 Quartermaster units. 

(See Table 18.) Comparable statistics are 
not available on the number of Quarter- 
master units trained by all of the various 
other agencies that at one time or another 
had jurisdiction over them, but on 30 June 
1945 there were 3,781 Quartermaster divi- 
sional and nondivisional units. 34 

Total . . 

QMC Units 
... 3,781 

Air force 403 

Ground force 1 ,6 1 8 

Service force 1,760 

These figures indicate that while The 
Quartermaster General had compara- 
tively little control at any time over the 
actual training of the ground force type 
units and none over the air force type, he 
did train approximately one out of four 

33 Rpt, Mil Tng Div, Tng of Units, Pt. I, Camp 
Lee Sec., pp. 1, 32-33 and Pt. II, Camp Lee Sec, p. 
8 and App. B. 

"Ibid., Pt. I, QM School Sec, pp. 14-15. 

"•• Ihid.. Pt. I, Ft. Devens Sec, p. 1; Pt. I, Camp 
Ellis Sec, p. 26; and Pt. II, Ft. Devens Sec, p. 1. 

31 See Statistics. April 1952 draft, Troop Units Sec, 
MS in OCMH. 



Quartermaster units which took the field 
in World War II. 

Principal Training Problems 

Quartermaster units activated before 
1943 not only were trained under widely 
varying conditions and interpretations of 
doctrine but were handicapped by many 
other difficulties, some of which persisted 
throughout the war. One of the most 
serious of these during the earliest stages 
of mobilization in 1939 and most of 1940 
was the inadequacy of funds for defense 
purposes : 

Ammunition was not available for train- 
ing nor was money available to lease or pur- 
chase maneuver areas. Even the problem of 
purchasing enough gas